Seven Questions with Same-Day Joint Surgery Patient Kevin Dailey
Kevin Dailey, vice president of administration and chief human resources officer at Southwestern Vermont Health Care, was among the first patients to receive a same day joint replacement with SVMC Orthopedics. He shared his experience in a recent interview.
1. SVMC: When did you know that you needed surgery on your knee?
KD: I had three knee surgeries at New England Baptist Hospital in Boston 48 years ago, and I knew that I would eventually need total knee replacement. Since those surgeries, I have not been able to kneel, squat, or crawl and I adapted to experiencing pain under some circumstances. In January 2019, I slipped and fell on some ice, fractured my tibial plateau, and spent 8 weeks in a wheelchair. Although I fully recovered from the fracture, I experienced a new, ongoing pain as a consequence of the fall. By January 2020, the pain interfered with my daily activities to the point that I could no longer delay the inevitable knee replacement procedure.
2. SVMC: How did you decide on SVMC Orthopedics and Dr. Schneiderbauer?
KD: Prior to joining SVMC, I planned, for decades, to have the joint replacement surgery in Boston. However, while working within SVMC and seeing first-hand the level of patient care provided by the clinical and service staffs, I began to consider having the procedure here. I reviewed our orthopedic teams’ credentials and qualifications and spoke with a number of folks within our organization. I was impressed with what I learned about the entire orthopedic team, including Dr. Schneiderbauer, so I made an appointment with her to discuss my circumstances.
3. SVMC: What was your first appointment with her like?
KD: Very positive. She empathetically listened to my concerns, articulated my knee to assess the status, and carefully outlined her opinions on options available for me to consider. After further discussion, we decided to schedule the joint replacement surgery.
4. SVMC: How did it feel to learn that you could go home the same day?
KD: After reviewing my situation, Dr. Schneiderbauer said that we could consider a same-day release, depending on how I came through the surgery and whether I could complete the required post-op activities. The surgery ended at 10 a.m., I recovered from the anesthesia by 11:30 a.m., and Dr. Schneiderbauer arranged for a physical therapy visit at noon. I was able to demonstrate that I could walk around safely, using a walker. After the PT visit, Dr. Schneiderbauer approved my discharge, and my wife picked me up at 1 p.m. I was delighted to be on my way home the same day.
5. SVMC: How has your recovery been?
KD: In my opinion, very successful. No complications. I was advised it would be 6 weeks before I could gradually return to work. I was able to return on a limited basis after only 2 weeks and was full-time by 6 weeks.
6. SVMC: What can you do now that you couldn’t do before?
KD: The chronic pain I adapted to over many years is now gone. I also have considerably better flexibility than before the surgery.
7. SVMC: How would you direct a friend or family member who was suffering with joint pain?
KD: Many of my friends and family were surprised to hear I opted to have it at SVMC. I have told them that I genuinely believe that the orthopedics, nursing, and support personnel at SVMC are as qualified here as anywhere else. Almost without exception, people have been impressed with the speed of my recovery and even more impressed that I was discharged on the day of the procedure.