Doug, who works on helicopters for the military, had a total knee replacement as an outpatient procedure and was discharged a few hours after surgery.
Q: When did you have your surgery?
A: My surgery was in January of 2015.
Q: What made you decide to get knee replacement surgery?
A: At 45, I was diagnosed that I needed a new knee, but I was told I had to wait until I was 50. I had one surgery with three different things: I had an osteotomy, a full meniscus and my third ACL. During that time, 30 days later I got staph infection. So everything was just really going downhill. I weighed about 240 pounds at that point, I was in pretty good shape. From that point on the pain just kept going. More pain. More pain. Not being able to move. Not being able to do things. I have to climb on the helicopter to do my job, and I got to a point after that that there was no way I was gonna be able to climb up there because I did not feel safe at all, and I actually had fear about climbing and coming down. That’s when I knew I needed a change.
Q: You had your total knee replaced at an outpatient surgery center - what was recovery like?
A: I was able to do outpatient, which I was very happy about. My surgery was 90 miles away: I got there at 6:30 in the morning, left at 10:30 in the morning and went back home. Got to the house, sat down for a while and I finally wanted to go upstairs. I actually walked upstairs the day of surgery. I quit taking pain pills two days into it, just didn’t need them. Why would you take something you don’t need?
Q: What did you find most interesting about the Conformis technology?
A: As a helicopter electrician, I’m a troubleshooter. To me everything has a solution. To me, the Conformis knee that was the only solution: there’s nothing better as far as I could tell that’s made at this point in time.
Q: What are you doing now that you've had your knee replacement?
A: I lost 20 pounds. During that five years of having so much pain and not wanting to do anything, I had lost probably 30-40% of my muscle mass on my legs. So now with exercising, getting back, now I can climb up the helicopter with no problem at all. Not only that, I feel safe. That safe feeling is back. That gives me back my confidence and my life.