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From Knee Replacement to Hunting in the Hills - Beau Maxon's Remarkable Rehabilitation Journey

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  • Written By: Norberto Orellana
From Knee Replacement to Hunting in the Hills - Beau Maxon's Remarkable Rehabilitation Journey

GILLETTE, Wyo. - Nov. 30, 2023 - Beau Maxon, a 47-year-old husband, father, and recently a grandfather, has been a resident of Gillette for 14 years. Currently a welder mechanic for a local utility company, Beau was born and raised in South Dakota. After a car accident left his right knee damaged, he embarked on a medical journey toward knee replacement. While the effects of the accident were not initially apparent, his mobility and comfort would decline as time went on. Eventually, a slip during a trap shoot four years ago led to initial fears of a torn meniscus; the reality was even more challenging - only 30% of Beau's meniscus remained, with the rest having been worn away over the years.

An Inevitable Need for Surgical Intervention

Non-surgical interventions provided temporary respite for the pain and mobility issues that Beau was facing. Eventually, however, these treatments became increasingly ineffective. As the wear and tear on his knee continued, Beau reached a point where surgery became inevitable. This past summer, Beau's surgeon decided it was time to commit to a knee replacement. Worried about missing the upcoming hunting season, a significant passion for Beau, he turned to Campbell County Health's Rehabilitation Services for guidance. Familiar with Brittany Johnson, PT, DPT, Beau had high expectations and knew Brittany and the CCH team were up for the task.

Beau expressed his confidence, saying, "I've known Brittany and her husband for a long time. My son blew out his knee in a football game, we went to her, and he has been good ever since. Later, my daughter, who was a big-time soccer player, ended up with a triple triad – we also took her to Brittany. My wife had two meniscus surgeries, and again, we worked with Brittany."

Beau's concern about potentially missing the upcoming hunting season prompted Brittany to take a proactive approach. Beau said, "When I spoke to her and shared my concerns, she told me, 'A month and a half before your surgery, you come to see me, and we'll have you ready for the surgery,' and that's what I did."

From Surgery to Hunting: A Team Effort

Just 48 hours post-surgery, Beau's rehabilitation kicked off guided by Brittany and the dedicated CCH Rehab Services team. The initial three-week post-op goal of a 90-degree bend and a 10-degree extension was not only met but exceeded, with Beau achieving a 123-degree bend and a 2-degree extension. Beau shared that much of the recovery is in the hands of the patient and their determination to achieve results, but that the care team must also be on board as CCH's team was for him.

"Through all this, there's been Brittany, Sam, Kasi, Angelica, Kristin, and others – they've all worked on me. Their support made all the difference," Beau reflected.

Hunting season posed a unique challenge for Beau. With only a couple of months of recovery under his belt, he was determined more than ever. Beau also became a grandfather, further fueling his desire to recover and regain his mobility. Hunting season started in October, and he successfully went hunting with his son. Because this was his first hunt after surgery, he was unsure of how we would do on the terrain and decided to take things easy. The following week, Beau was determined to get out to an area he particularly liked hunting in.

"I told myself I'm going to do this [hunting], I have to do this. We ended up going two and a half miles on some pretty rough and hilly terrain. I was slow, and I had some walking sticks to help, but I was able to do it,” Beau recounted. With the support of the rehab team, he not only persisted but triumphed over rough terrains.

Beau emphasized the symbiotic relationship between patient determination and the care team's expertise. He shared how the team supported his passion for hunting and his goal to do so at the start of the season. "Kasi made me bring my backpack, hunting gear, and walking sticks," shared Beau. "We walked all over the hospital campus, up steps, over hills; she had me do all that stuff so I would be ready."

When asked to do ten leg lifts, he would do thirty. He would shoot for three minutes when his therapists told him to balance on one leg for a minute. The CCH Rehab Services team noted Beau's steadfast resolve while ensuring his recovery was safe.

"They [CCH Rehab Services] push you as far as you will allow them to push you," said Beau. "But you've also got to have the desire to push. They noticed my drive and encouraged me to push boundaries safely."

For any patient, recovery has its ups, downs, and fair share of challenges. The Rehab Services staff's instant responsiveness ensured his comfort on challenging days. "The rehab team would instantly listen to me. They would try to work out the problem areas and knots on the tough days when I was really sore and hurting," Beau shared.

A Model of Excellence Every Day

As Beau continues his rehabilitation journey, he cherishes the bonds formed with the rehab team after working with them so closely. Summing up his time at CCH Rehab Services, Beau shared that he could not imagine ever telling anyone to seek physical therapy anywhere else. Beau credits the rehab team's skill, dedication, and compassion in helping facilitate his recovery, enabling him to participate in hunting season and regain mobility for his new grandchild.

Reflecting on his exceptional care, Beau succinctly summed up, "There is no one who will ever touch what they [CCH Rehab Services] have done for me. They're professionals, truly. They're amazing at what they do."

Campbell County Health Rehabilitation Services stands as a model of Excellence Every Day in Northeastern Wyoming, and Beau's story is a testament to that fact.

About Campbell County Health (CCH): An affiliate of UCHealth, CCH includes Campbell County Memorial Hospital, an acute care community hospital in Gillette Wyoming; Campbell County Medical Group with nearly 20 clinics; The Legacy Living & Rehabilitation Center long-term care center and the Powder River Surgery Center. With around 80 providers, 1,200 total staff and over 20 specialties, CCH is committed to serving our community by providing a lifetime of care with dedication, skill and compassion.


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