Country Girl At Heart: Double Hip Replacement Puts Sherry Back in Line

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Joint Replacement
Sherry Thorpe

On the afternoon of the Lady Antebellum concert, Sherry Thorpe stared in her closet, trying to choose the perfect outfit to match her cowboy boots.

“I have five pairs – two brown, two black and one blue – and I knew I wanted to be as comfortable as possible. My plan was to dance the night away,” says Sherry.

Finally deciding on the blue ones, she sat on the edge of her bed, and was suddenly shocked by a jolt of pain in her left hip, an all too familiar feeling. That entire evening, she sang along to her favorite songs, but was constantly reminded of her degenerative hip problems.

“I vividly remember dancing – and limping!  It didn’t matter though – I already had my hip surgery scheduled so there was a light at the end of the tunnel,” says Sherry.

Out of Step

Sherry’s struggles with her hips began in her twenties.

“I could feel my hips pop in and out just when I was walking,” says Sherry.

By her late thirties, her hips started hurting even without any physical activity, yet she blamed life’s normal aging process for the aches and discomfort. It was in her early fifties when the pain became unbearable, and she realized something was wrong. Simple things, such as sitting, going up a flight of stairs or sleeping for more than three hours a night, were disrupting her quality of life. At age 56, she found a solution to her decades of pain at the MemorialCare Joint Replacement Center at Long Beach Medical Center.

“Patients like Sherry have to know that persistent hip pain is not normal, and they don’t have to live their lives that way,” explains Debi Fenton, joint care coordinator, MemorialCare Joint Replacement Center, Long Beach Medical Center. “Many people assume that joint pain only occurs in the elderly, but that’s not always the case. Age is certainly not the sole factor in determining if someone is in need of a hip replacement.”

Redefining Surgery

Each year, more than one million people undergo total joint replacement surgery in the United States.

For those suffering from arthritic knee or hip pain that severely limits their daily activities, the MemorialCare Joint Replacement Center at Long Beach Medical Center offers MAKOplasty® robotic-assisted surgery technology bringing a new level of precision to patients with knee and hip pain, as well as a comprehensive rapid recovery program with outstanding outcomes.

Through MAKOplasty® Total Hip Arthroplasty, patients at the MemorialCare Joint Replacement Center at Long Beach Medical Center have an alternative to traditional hip replacement and partial knee replacement. MAKOplasty® is an innovative, robotic-assisted tool that allows the surgeon the highest level of precision, every time, in placement of hip implants. 

With MAKOplasty®, surgeons have three dimensional imaging and real-time information as they place and align the implant. For patients like Sherry, this precision means reduced incidence of dislocations and accurate leg length. 

“MAKOplasty®, is like GPS for the surgeon,” says Fenton. “The surgeon is still performing the surgery, but the robotic-assisted technology is feeding the needed details for greater accuracy and a more precise measurement of where the implant should be. It really is leading-edge, and patients are on their feet as early as the same day of surgery.”


Ready to Wrangle

When Sherry woke up after her procedure, her family and friends were right there by her side. Finally, her bone-on-bone pain was relieved.

“I couldn’t believe I was walking already with crutches, not a walker,” says Sherry. “I even went up the stairs and got in and out of a car – all before lunchtime.”

Just one week later, Sherry celebrated her 56th birthday. And because Sherry’s first MAKOplasty® procedure was such a success, she decided to have the exact same surgery on her right hip.

“I couldn’t think of one reason not to. Not one,” says Sherry. “You can bet that I will be line dancing again in no time, without the limp.”

For more information, please call (562) 933-4014.