Milestone 1,000th Robotic Joint Patient Gets Life Reboot

Local surgical history was made last month when board-certified orthopedic surgeon Dr. Eric Nelson of Heartland Orthopedic Specialists performed the 1,000th Mako® robotic joint replacement at Alomere Health. His patient, Glenwood local Elizabeth C., has had great results. 

A retired daycare provider and grandmother of three, Elizabeth had severe discomfort due to bone-on-bone arthritis in her knee. She had discovered the option for robotic joint replacement surgery and spoke with a patient who’d had a successful procedure using the new technology. 

Through family, Elizabeth knew the quality care Heartland Orthopedic Specialists and Dr. Nelson had to offer, and just one month ago, Elizabeth underwent her robotically assisted knee replacement using the Mako system at Alomere Health. Heartland Orthopedic Specialists was the first in the region to offer this advanced treatment, providing patients with a personalized surgical experience and benefits such as:

  • Implants designed for natural, normal movement
  • Less pain and quicker recovery than traditional joint replacements
  • Personalized surgical plans based on your anatomy for longer-lasting joints
  • Reduced risk of complications

Now, after Heartland Orthopedic Specialists’ 1,000th Mako joint replacement, Elizabeth is feeling better every day. She's back to walking normally without the pain she felt before.

“The pain that I had in my knee before my surgery is gone. It’s worth going through so you can get your life back together,” says Elizabeth. “Now I’m doing really well. I’m pleased with everything that Dr. Nelson did, and I’m thankful for his knowledge and his ability to do what he does.”

In addition to the pain and limitation Elizabeth had before surgery, she noted that her walking gait was described as odd. Now, according to her husband, that is gone too.

“Walking is a lot easier. I go out for walks, and I’m working my way to going farther each time,” she explains. “I’m doing things around the house the way I normally do, and I’m looking forward to being able to do a lot more once this knee is totally healed up.”

Elizabeth is currently finishing her physical therapy program, but she has already been able to skip a session because she was doing so well. She was getting around her house without any walking devices only two weeks after surgery. 

While she recovered well from her first knee replacement a year and a half ago, this recovery has also been a good one for Elizabeth.

“I think this [recovery] has been a little bit faster and a little bit easier,” Elizabeth says. “I’m just so thankful for that fact that I don’t have bone-on-bone arthritis in my knees anymore; it just hurts, and you can’t plan on going anywhere when you don’t know how far you’re going to have to walk.

“I’m looking forward to going places and not thinking ‘Oh, how far am I going to have to walk’ now.”

Today, Elizabeth continues to get stronger after a milestone surgery both for her and for the region. In addition to her own hard work in rehabilitation, she has been well served by her husband’s postoperative care and support as well as the dedicated doctors and staff of Heartland Orthopedic Specialists and Alomere Health.

“It’s well worth it, that’s for sure. Everybody I worked with did an excellent job—It was a wonderful experience,” says Elizabeth. “Anybody that’s having knee problems should go and get it done.”

If chronic joint pain is keeping your or your loved one from living life to the fullest, consult with one of our specialty-trained joint replacement experts. Call (800) 762-1177 to schedule your visit or schedule an appointment online.