Get big city orthopedic care close to home
Frank Marshall had been a runner for a number of years, completing a number of 5K, 10K and half marathons. So when he returned home from a run one morning in October 2017 experiencing pain in his left knee, he knew it was time to call the doctor.
“I came up limping at the end of the run. When that limp stayed with me, I knew it was time to see someone, so we turned to LMH Health,” he said.
Both Frank – who had formerly been the assistant dean at the KU School of Business - and his wife, Cathy, had previously received care at LMH Health. They’d worked with Charles Brooks, MD, and Teresa King, MD, for gastrointestinal care. Cathy had a previous arm surgery with Douglass Stull, MD, an orthopedic surgeon with OrthoKansas, so they knew it was time to turn to the experts there.
Frank’s experience at OrthoKansas began with sports medicine provider and orthopedic surgeon Stephan Prô, MD.
“When I saw Dr. Prô and told him that my left knee was hurting, he asked me if I was sure it was that knee that was bothering me,” Frank shared. “It surprised him that my right knee wasn’t bothering me at the time because the imaging showed that it was my right knee that didn’t have any cartilage in it,” Frank shared.
To alleviate his pain, Dr. Prô started him on a course of cortisone injections in his left knee. About 180 days into treatment, Frank’s right knee started bothering him as well. He continued getting shots in both of his knees every 90 days until late 2019, when surgery became the best treatment option. Adam Goodyear, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at OrthoKansas, took over Frank’s care.
Adam Goodyear, MD
“Dr. Prô had treated Frank non-operatively and over time, those treatments had begun to become less beneficial. Since he doesn’t perform total knee replacement, Dr. Prô sent him to me for a consult,” said Dr. Goodyear.
It was apparent that surgery was the most appropriate option. Frank scheduled his total knee replacement with LMH Health OrthoKansas, a team that’s earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Advanced Total Hip and Knee Replacement Certification. LMH is one of only two hospitals in Kansas to earn this designation, both west of the Kansas City metro area.
The certification, in collaboration with the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, recognizes the highest standards of care during a total hip and total knee replacement, from pre-surgical orthopedic consultation to intraoperative and post-surgical follow-up care.
Ready for surgery
Frank wanted to be as prepared as possible for his total knee replacement. He asked Dr. Prô for a pre-surgical physical therapy referral and then turned to the experts at LMH Health Therapy Services at the West Campus for help. Physical therapist Tyrel Reed worked with Frank for about a month prior to his right total knee replacement.
Tyrel Reed, DPT
“One of the major benefits of having a patient in pre-operatively is that we can lay out the expectations for what they’re going to face after their knee replacement. That might include going over range of motion goals, establishing a home exercise program and improving baseline strength prior to surgery,” Reed said.
After a month in PT, Frank underwent knee replacement surgery at the LMH Health Main Campus in February 2020. He checked in during the wee hours on Monday morning, underwent surgery that day and spent one night in the hospital.
“Frank was supposed to be in the hospital for two nights, but they sent him home early because he was making great progress,” Cathy said.
He spent six weeks in physical therapy after his right knee replacement, working with Reed twice each week. After therapy ended, Frank went back to life as usual until June 2021 when he decided it was time to have his left knee done too.
“Dr. Goodyear said that my left knee wasn’t hurting me enough that a total knee replacement was necessary yet, but I was ready,” he said.
Frank went through pre-operative physical therapy for a month before his left knee replacement, just as he had before the surgery on his right. This time the surgery was a bit different, as Dr. Goodyear performed the procedure using the MAKO robotic arm. He said the MAKO has been proven to facilitate a shorter hospital stay, typically less pain and quicker return to function.
“The MAKO system can be more precise than traditional surgical techniques because it can create a 3-D model of each patient’s joint,” Dr. Goodyear explained. “Using the system, physicians create a personalized surgical plan. The robotic arm allows surgeons to work within the parameters created and use it to assist in placing new joints. MAKO also allows us to perform both knee and hip replacements, which is something that other robotic surgical systems don’t do. Our patients receive the advanced care they deserve with the use of this technology.”
Frank underwent outpatient surgery at the Lawrence Surgery Center, located at the LMH Health West Campus, and was home the same day. Cathy shared that though he had normal post-operative pain following surgery, Frank was up and moving around much more quickly than he was following his first knee replacement.
“He was much more mobile more quickly after the surgery using the MAKO. I had to work on him to continue to use his walker because he virtually discarded it after two days,” she laughed. “He was walking with complete balance and a normal stride with his second surgery.”
When Frank returned to LMH Health Therapy Services again for physical therapy, Reed saw a difference in his recovery following the robotic-assisted surgery.
“He had less pain immediately afterward, which allowed us to progress faster through his recovery. We start with four to six weeks in physical therapy. He was in good shape prior to his surgery, allowing him to bounce back more quickly than someone who hasn’t been exercising or eating well. In Frank’s case because of the pre-operative therapy, expectations, hard work and commitment to rehab, he was in a good place to move forward at the six week mark,” he said.
Frank has returned to the gym five days per week, continuing his own rehab through walking and weight training. This means that he’s been able to get back to doing the things he loves, including walking and playing golf. He’s got a goal to run another short race – just to prove to himself that he can do it – and is even looking forward to a hiking trip to Alaska in 2022.
“I can’t recommend the team at OrthoKansas enough. They’re genuinely interested in you as a patient and that you have the best possible outcome. Having robotic-assisted surgery is a game changer. It’s amazing that it’s available right here in Lawrence,” he said.
Cathy wholeheartedly agreed, citing the expert care Frank received close to home at LMH Health OrthoKansas.
“We’re so proud to have a state-of-the-art facility, amazing doctors and physical therapists available right here in Lawrence,” she said. “You get big city care here with a small town feel and don’t have to travel to Kansas City or Topeka. It’s phenomenal.”
LMH Health and OrthoKansas have the clinicians, technology and facilities to provide healthcare that’s not only exceptional for a community hospital—it’s among the best anywhere. Our multidisciplinary approach gives us the ability to treat most orthopedic injuries and conditions in house, closer to where our patients live and play. When you’re ready to start your journey, give us a call and we’ll get you moving again.