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Knee, Shoulder Surgery by Dr. Israelsen Helps Patient Stay Activ

  • Author: Denise Thorson
  • Date Submitted: Mar 7, 2019

“Dr. Israelsen really listened to me and made sure I got my questions answered. It makes a big difference in the confidence you have in a surgeon.”

Denise Thorson came to Gillette, Wyoming in 1976 from North Dakota. Always an active person, Denise loves water skiing, bow hunting and Telemark skiing, along with working with the horses on her property north of Rozet, Wyoming.

She had her first orthopedic experience with Wyoming Orthopedics & Spine surgeon Dr. Hans Kisochos, and chose Dr. Stanford Israelsen at WYOS when she needed knee replacement surgery a year ago.

“Dr. Israelsen really listened to me and made sure I got my questions answered,” said Denise. “It makes a big difference in the confidence you have in a surgeon.”

Denise actually began her rehab before she had her knee replacement to strengthen her knee as much as possible prior to surgery.

“I don’t know if that made the difference, but I was able to leave CCMH the same day I had the surgery,” said Denise.

When Denise began to have shoulder proAems last fall, she returned to WYOS and to Dr. Israelsen. She had a left shoulder Bankart repair with Acromioplasty, which is a procedure to restore stability and relieve pain in the shoulder.

Denise’s left arm controlled her accuracy as a bow hunter, and she was eager to have the procedure so she could go back to bow hunting for bear in the spring and elk in the fall. Denise says she was ‘religious’ about her completing her physical therapy, and was released 12 weeks after her procedure.

“I have no patience for sitting still,” said Denise. “The look on Dr. Israelsen’s face was priceless when I asked him when I could go back to Telemarking,” For those who don’t know, Telemarking is a skiing technique that uses a specialized type of equipment that fixes only the toe of the ski boot to the ski. Denise also appreciated the little things that made her surgery experience more comfortable.

“They gave me a waterproof-type bandage wrap for my shoulder,” she said. “I didn’t need as much help to take a shower, and you really appreciate the comfort of a hot shower when you’re hurting.”

Denise has some advice for readers when it comes to having surgery: “Some people have unrealistic expectations about the outcome,” she said. “You really need to ask questions about everything, and be prepared to commit to rehab after surgery and keep doing it. Some people say not to have surgery done here, but I found Dr. Israelsen intelligent and capable—I had great experiences with both of my surgeries.”

Expert Orthopedic & Spine Care In Gillette, Wyoming

Dr. Stanford Israelsen is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon at Wyoming Orthopedics & Spine. The physicians at WYOS take an innovative and comprehensive approach to the treatment of acute and chronic orthopedic pain. Have your surgery in our modern operating rooms at Campbell County Memorial Hospital or Powder River Surgery Center.

For a consultation, call 307.686.1413 or visit