Patient Stories ~ Hobbies: Hiking/ Camping

Susan

Profession: Retired
Doctor: Dr. Warme

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Unstable Knee, ACL tear
Just two months into a retirement that was supposed to be filled with hikes and bike rides, I caught my foot on an immovable object, heard an ominous pop, felt outrageous knee pain, and took a header into a nearby azalea bush. The MRI showed no intact ACL fibers, non-displaced bone fractures, meniscus tears, Baker's cyst, etc...
The surgeon I saw at that time dismissed me as a candidate for surgery due to my age and weight. I was fitted with a knee brace and encouraged to strengthen the muscles that support the knee. That was the first time in my life that I felt written-off medically. Initially dispirited, I wallowed in food and self-pity, for awhile.....
Fast forward five years. I was leading an active life, exercised in earnest, had lost 65-70 pounds. Nevertheless, my knee became more unstable, and I fell 5 times in as many months. Concerned about the possibility of further injuries, I had a consultation with Dr. Warme for reconsideration of my eligibility for surgery. Fortunately he said the magic words that I was a good candidate for ACL reconstruction.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

To a person, I find them all to be accessible, easy to talk to, kind, and respectful. Both Dr. Warme and Carlos performed a thorough but painless examination of my knee. (How is that possible!) Dr. Warme took time to answer all my questions and address any concerns. I feel confident that, even if he had found that I was not a candidate for surgery, he would have delivered the message in a way that was not spirit-crushing. But fortunately he said yes.

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Lew

Profession: Education
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

I coached multiple sports for 35 years. Gymnastics was probably the hardest on my body, especially my shoulders. The humeral heads were worn flat. My left shoulder was the worst, but I continued to exercise, refusing to give in due to my active life. For several years the condition deteriorated further until I had difficulty lifting my arm above my shoulder and I was in constant pain with every movement. The joint actually seemed to sag out of socket and lock up. It was compromising my activities and I could not get in a good exercise work-out because of the pain and limitations.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme's involvement in outdoor activities, especially his mountain climbing background struck a chord with me. I felt like he understood where I was coming from and what I wanted to get back to doing. He said he could put me back doing what I used to do; not simply get rid of the pain. He was honest with me; saying there were three parts to this procedure - (1) His part - surgery, (2) My part - religious exercise during and after recovery and (3) God's part. Recognizing God's part is not a weakness, but a strength in my book and an important measure of a man.

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Megan

Profession: Business
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD & Jill T Eggers-Knight

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

My left knee kept hyperextending when I was playing soccer or jogging. There wasn't much pain at all, it just was annoying. I assumed I had pulled something, but come to find out I had completely torn my ACL. It was a pretty clean break.

My right knee, I returned to playing soccer too early from my left knee surgery and I heard a loud audible popping sound and pain immediately rushed to my knee, leg and back. It hurt to walk, I couldn't walk on my own and the swelling started immediately. I had completely torn my right ACL, tore my posterior horn and body of the medial meniscus, sprained my fibular collateral ligament, strained the medial head of my gastrocnemius and had mild chondromalacia patella.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

The doctors explained the options for replacing my ACL and it was a hard choice but they answered all of my questions and made it all relevant to the sports I play.

Before I was heading into surgery the doctor came and explained to me what he was going to do, the staff was so incredibly nice and helped keep my mind at ease. Then my recovery was specialized to what I would need to do to return to my favorite sport, soccer.

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Shannon

Profession: Health Care
Doctor: Winston Warme

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

5+ years of progressing arthritis/bone spur formation and pain of the sternoclavicular joint. I wasn't able to tolerate my arm hanging at my side for periods of time after my arm was at rest, primarily in the mornings after waking up. I could not raise my arm above my head without pain and I also couldn't do any strenuous activity on my right side (I am right handed) including carrying my 2 year old son. I consulted with 2 other orthopedic doctors prior to being referred to Dr.Warme. One of those physicians diagnosed thoracic outlet syndrome (which I don't believe I have) and sent me for physical therapy, which only helped a small amount. Once at UW, we tried a steroid injection in the joint initially because I was hesitant to jump right into surgery. The steroid injection took the pain away for 1-2 glorious weeks but it returned, so we moved forward with a surgical debridement of the SC joint. I am currently 6 weeks post op, and feel better than I thought I could. The pain is gone and other than strengthening the muscles in my shoulder and back that I have compensated with for years, I feel more normal now than I have in a long time.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme and his whole team including MAs, nurses, fellows, residents, PAs and every other staff member I encountered were caring, friendly and knowledgable. Dr. Warme is the only (attending) surgeon I encountered in my journey as a patient that never made me feel rushed, listened to my concerns and understood my disease process and needs.

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John

Profession: Government
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Deterioration of both shoulder joints, gradually preventing many activities.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Attitude and positive outcome.

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Michael

Profession: Government
Doctor: Kushagra Verma

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

I had massively debilitating pain radiating down my left leg and into my toes after simply standing up and feeling like doing so had snapped something connected to my leg. I had already experienced this type of pain pattern, but only when doing certain movements and stretches. This was intensely worse, and over the next few days had progressed to the point that I couldn't sit, stand, lie down, or move without severe pain to my leg. Eventually I found that if I remained standing I could eventually push through minimize the pain. I basically remained standing every day for weeks, lying down to sleep (minimally due to pain) and waking up every morning with severe symptoms that would only diminish when I stood for about an hour. Sitting or lying down for any short period of time would bring the severe leg pain back.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

My doctors, Dr. Verma and Dr. Leim, were professional and direct. Their analysis was clearly explained and supported by the findings of my MRI. I am an attorney who litigates spinal conditions as part of my practice, so the doctors encouraged me to read medical literature and studies to help me understand the risks, benefits, and outcomes of the appropriate surgery. I am grateful for this level of respect for my decision whether or not to pursue surgery. They quickly earned my trust and understood quickly that I wanted to pursue the best treatment options for long term success. Their clear and efficient approach to patient care stood out, as well as their friendliness and caring in handling a very painful situation.

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Sean

Profession: Student
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

During the second half of baseball season in my junior year of high school (2011-12), my left shoulder popped out 7 or 8 times in a matter of a month. It would happen when I would bat, but I played through the pain every game and didn't sit out once. I finally got my shoulder checked out at the end of the season and learned that I had a tear in my left Labrum and it needed to be repaired.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme really cared about me, not only as his patient, but as a person too. He was very respectful and humble and always calm in the way he presented himself. It was a pleasure to get to know him.

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Gary

Profession: Other
Doctor: Dr. Winston Warme

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

I suspected a partial tear of my rotator cuff due to a mild ache especially during sleeping. While playing tennis and an energetic serve I actually tore the rotator cuff on my non dominant shoulder.
I'm a 60 year old male, very active athletically and want to continue being competitive in tennis. Having had numerous orthopedic repairs of both knees and my dominant shoulder, I wanted to find a surgeon interested in keeping me athletically active. I was looking for a sports medicine surgeon that wouldn't just tell me to stop playing and avoid strenuous athletics. What I found was Dr. Winston Warme with numerous testimonials from physically active individuals of all ages. His background of a retired military physician also intrigued me as did his education. My research paid off, I couldn't be more happy.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme and his PA Carlos from my first visit to my 12 week post operative followup have been sincerely interested in getting me back to the physical condition and competitive player that I want to continue being.
I was completely surprised how quickly I was able to get and appointment and subsequently surgery scheduled.
Another surprise was day three post operative, receiving a phone call from Dr. Warme inquiring as to how I was doing and giving me guidance on my medications. I wouldn't have expected this from the physician, maybe the PA.
Each visit I have truly felt Dr. Warme cares about my recovery, my desires to continue competitive tennis and me personally, engaging in conversation medically and my personal life and career.

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Diane

Profession: Health Care
Doctor: Dr. Warme

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Fractured Clavicle- 10 Lessons
When I fractured my clavicle friends and co-workers figured I’d done it hiking or skiing and had an exciting story to accompany my injury. I wish. Despite an active lifestyle, my injury occurred while commuting to work on the bus. An unexpected hard stop had me airborne, ping-ponging down the aisle, landing on my head and L upper extremity. I’m sure it was exciting to watch, anyway. Lesson #1- Remember to hold on when standing/walking on a moving bus.
I was sure I was just fine; I’m a nurse, and can easily assess my own injuries. Right. Hitting my head hard clearly impacted my assessment and decision making skills. A couple days later when the pain reached excruciating levels, I decided I needed an x-ray, which clearly showed the clavicle fracture. Lesson #2 - Health care professionals are not always reliable at self-diagnosis; and #3- Head injuries make for stupid decisions.
Dr. Warme was encouraging and supportive, advising that my fracture would likely heal without any intervention.
At my 4 week recheck appointment, I was SURE I would have x-ray evidence of my amazing powers of healing; instead, much to my dismay, the fracture had worsened and displaced. Healing normally was now much less assured. Lesson #2 re-visited. Slow learner.
Again Dr. Warme was encouraging and supportive. He took the time necessary to discuss options in detail, which greatly assisted in making the decision to proceed with surgery. As a surgical nurse, I know enough about surgery to be wary. Add to that, I’d never had surgery myself. Lesson #4- Transitioning from nurse to patient was going to be interesting.
I underwent an open reduction, internal fixation with a clavicle pin about a week later.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme and team were interested in my circumstances, my lifestyle, and my particular anatomy- in short; they were committed to me and my care. They utilized their surgical knowledge and expertise to afford me the best outcome. Having surgery is a bit of a trust exercise. If you’re going to walk off that cliff, it’s imperative to trust your team. They made that part easy.

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ANTONELLA

Profession: Student
Doctor: Dr. Winston J. Warme

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Over five years ago I slipped down the stairs in my home, holding on to the railimg with my right arm while bracing the fall with my left. Over time both of my shoulders became sensitive and unstable, semi-dislocating when least expected.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme and his team treated me as a person, not a problem. I always knew they were listening to my concerns and that I was consantly aware of my options for optimum health and recovery.

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Vern

Profession: Construction
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Shoulder injuries from work and sports. I was in constant pain with a restricted range of motion and I was unable to use my arms for much above my head. The pain made it difficult to sleep.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warme and his team provided excellent care and information throughout both surgeries and treatment before and after. I had a high level of trust in the information provided and in Dr. Warme's abilities.

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Paul

Profession: Health Care
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Sternoclavicular subluxation that began when my arm was pulled on by a patient I was treating. The pain was immediate and since it was an L&I claim I had to go the route of Physical Therapy for 4months before they decided I should see a surgeon. I had limited range of motion, pain in neck from bone pulling muscles downward, and a real nasty click and pop when either pulling my shoulders back or shrugging my shoulders.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

Dr. Warmes bedside manner is the greatest. He really took time to know who I was and showed genuine concern for what I was going through. Not only is he an amazing surgeon but he is an amazing guy all around.

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Carrie

Profession: Health Care
Doctor: Winston J. Warme, MD

Briefly describe your symptoms and the medical condition that brought you to see the doctor.

Pain in the collarbone/sternum area, tingling/pain down right arm. Lack of range of motion. Dislocation that I was able to reduce on my own on daily basis.
Bone spur on sternum dislocating collarbone at joint.

What one or two things stand out to you about your experience with your doctor and their team?

The professional approach, yet still warm and understanding. Organized and confident.

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