Because of my orthopaedic care, I can be in full training for an Ironman competition.

I was 19-years-old when I tore my right ACL as a college soccer player. It wasn’t very common back then amongst female athletes, and I had one surgeon already mess up my first surgery. I was referred to Dr. David Altchek by a fellow player. He was doing an ACL repair arthroscopically which was very new at the time. For 20 years I was able to play soccer, snowboard, bike, complete four marathons and become a competitive triathalete.  I was born with hip dysplasia, and unfortunately after 20 years of wear and tear, I had major hip pain. Again I was referred to HSS for my hip. Who at 36 years old goes for a hip consult? Dr. Coleman knew my athletic history and did my arthroscopic hip surgery hopefully allowing me to avoid a hip replacement years later. I finished the Miami Marathon eight months after that surgery.

In a freak accident I tore my right medial meniscus within the year. I went back to Dr. Altchek who pretty much saved my athletic life 20 years earlier. He said, “It will be a quick fix. We go in and snip it.” I said, “Okay. I am training for an Ironman, the mecca of all Ironmans. I will fix it and move on.” I came out of surgery with a full length leg brace and was told I couldn’t train for at least four months! I ended up having a complete medial meniscal repair. I never heard of this and I never knew it was an option. I freaked out at first, but Dr. Altchek’s P.A. explained that any other surgeon would have removed my meniscus and left me with bone on bone. That would have instantly ended my running and triathlete career on the spot. The concept of that scared me to death, and I was thankful that I can still do what I want. So I am four months out of that surgery and in full training for my Ironman.

Read more about Joanne’s remarkable story in Times of Northport and the New York Post.

Related Topics:
Getting Back in the Game: Understanding the Impacts of Treatment Options for ACL Tears
Ortho-Pinion: You Have an ACL Tear – What’s Next?
For more information on ACL injuries, click here
Ortho-Info: Meniscal Tears

My Second First

Because of my orthopaedic care, I can be in full training for an Ironman competition.


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