Photo caption: Sher Fox of Downers Grove (left) worked with physical therapist Connie Lecnher at Adventist Paulson Rehabilitation in Willowbrook following her bilateral knee surgery.
Hinsdale – Planning for a total knee replacement can be daunting. Deciding to have both knees done simultaneously can be downright frightening.
Sher Fox of Downers Grove was up to the challenge. She was the director of volunteer services for Adventist Hinsdale Hospital when her surgeon approved her plan for bilateral knee surgery.
“I had a responsible position and I wanted to minimize my time away from the office,” Fox said. “A friend of mine had both knees done at the same time. I was with her three months after her surgery and she celebrated by making a three-mile walk to get ice cream. I thought, ‘I can do that.’”
Fox appreciates the superior care she received at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, and the support of therapists in the inpatient rehab unit and at the Adventist Paulson Rehabilitation outpatient facility, 619 Plainfield Road, Suite 100 in Willowbrook.
Fox had surgery in February 2011 and returned to work in mid-April. She underwent surgery on a Monday, moved to the hospital’s rehab unit on a Thursday, and was discharged a week later.
She spent a weekend at home before beginning rehab three mornings a week at the Adventist Paulson Rehabilitation facility.
“I can’t say enough about the physical therapist I had at the hospital, or any of the women that I met at Paulson,” Fox said. “It felt like a team. We had goals. I would definitely go back to Paulson anytime I needed it. My experience there went beyond quality of care. It was an attitude. They were invested in me.”
Getting surgery done on both knees is the way to go if someone is suited for the procedure, said Connie Lechner, a physical therapist who worked with Fox at Paulson.
“But the rehab is twice the amount of work,” Lechner said. “It takes a very focused and motivated client and Sher is just that. She was very brave.”
The goal of rehab is for the patient to return to normal movement, Lechner said. This means eliminating a limp that may have developed before surgery.
“I tell patients, yes, you will get rid of your limp,” Lechner said. “It isn’t easy. The mind/body connection is very strong. The patient must believe they can get better. Treatment is both physical and psychological. We treat the whole person.”
Having support from a friend or family member can help. Fox had her sister.
“My sister stayed with me and bribed me with ice cream to exercise,” Fox said.
Fox has steadily grown more active since her retirement in September.
“I just increased my daily walk to at least two and a half miles,” Fox said. “I sometimes walk three miles a day. I have lost 40 pounds. This fall I climbed more than a mile up a mountain to disperse my mother’s ashes. I can dance again. It just keeps getting better.”
Offering one-on-one care, many staff members at Adventist Paulson Rehabilitation have more than 20 years of experience in their respective areas of expertise, remaining current on advances in rehabilitation through continuing education. For more on the center, call (630) 856-8200.
Adventist Midwest Health includes Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital, Adventist GlenOaks Hospital, Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. To find a physician, visit www.keepingyouwell.com.
Physicians on the medical staff of Adventist Midwest Health Hospitals are independent contractors, and are not agents of the hospitals.
Media contact: Chris LaFortune, public relations specialist, Adventist Midwest Health, firstname.lastname@example.org; 630-856-2354