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His & Hers Knee Replacements

Jan 31, 2015

Vance Bodily was playing horseshoes when he realized he was going to have to have a knee replacement. "I was down at the world senior games in 2012 and I went to pitch a shoe and my knee just went out from under me," he says. "My knees were just worn out." He sought treatment at University of Utah Health Orthopaedic Center and in 2013 had his right knee replaced. In 2014 he went back in for a consultation on getting his left knee replaced as well. This time, though, he didn't go alone: Shirley, his wife of 59 years came along to discuss her knee problems. "My knees were bone on bone and they were really hurting," she says.

With "his and hers" knee replacements needed, Christopher Pelt, MD, a joint replacement specialist at the Orthopaedic Center, saw a unique opportunity. "When we went there Dr. Pelt said 'why don't you both get them done on the same day?'" says Shirley. The Bodilys looked at this as a great opportunity. "Fewer trips," says Vance. "It made it so the care was easier too. People who cared for us didn't have to come back twice as many times."

Vance and Shirley are amazed at how well their knees have healed following the joint replacement. "When I went up to have my knees done I could hardly walk for the pain," says Vance. "But they put those new knees in and you just don't have that pain any more. Dr. Pelt did a super job. I would be in a wheelchair without the new knees."

Shirley even amazed the orthopedic staff in the days following her surgery. "We had a walker and we went out in the hall and the way I took off they said 'you look like you're running,'" she says. "When I got home I came in the house with the walker, I walked through the kitchen and down the hall and parked the walker, and I have not had any canes or help since then."

Vance and Shirley are back to doing the things they love most—without pain. Shirley says she's enjoying working in her garden, and Vance is planning to go on the family elk hunt. And of course, get back in the horseshoe pit. "My horseshoe pitching average went from 66 percent down to 55 percent so I plan to get that back up," he says.