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No More Golf, Courtesy Zimmer Natural Knee

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Dixon, ILBill had his first Zimmer knee replacement in 2009 and says it’s just fine. But he had a Zimmer Natural knee replacement on the other knee in 2010 and experienced all kinds of problems including infection and instability. And it put the kibosh on his golf game.

“My golf game wasn’t worth a damn anyway,” says Bill, laughing. “Seriously, I am 84 years old and I may not have many years left but every one is valuable so this knee has really affected my lifestyle, to say the least.”

Bill went back to his surgeon and was told to come back in a year because “these things sometimes take care of themselves”, and sometimes not. So Bill waited a year, and all that time he suffered with patella clunk syndrome. “If you stood 15 feet away, I could bend my knee and you would hear the clunk,” he says. “It was very uncomfortable so I had arthroscopic surgery one year later. After that I went into physical therapy for a long time.

“My wife and I went to California for the Winter and one day when I was golfing the prosthesis of the 2010 total replacement surgery popped loose. I phoned my surgeon back home and he advised me to see another surgeon in California who also used Zimmer components. He took an x-ray and noticed a shadow that indicated the component had shifted maybe ½ inch, which resulted in instability, fear of falling and having to be very careful when walking. And it was very painful.

“When I got home my surgeon saw the x-ray and turns out I had knee revision surgery in April, 2012. Now I have a five-inch spike down into my tibia that is giving me hell. They took apart the components, put them in a ‘bio hazard bag’ and sent them home with me. So I’m back in physical therapy but I am still hopeful that it will be OK.”

Although Bill remains optimistic, he is going to pursue a Zimmer lawsuit. He is definitely not blaming the surgeon.

“I think my surgeon is extremely competent,” says Bill. “I was one of ten patients who had a total knee replacement by him and his team that day; he has a production line you wouldn’t believe. My wife has two Zimmer knee replacements by the same surgeon and they are both fine. The day she had hers done, he did 12 knee replacements. He has a variety of competent people in the surgical ward, each with a particular job to do.

“As far as Zimmer is concerned I have no clue whether they are to blame, but I have been told that my Zimmer natural knee could be defective. I am an old manufacturing guy, and I have a great appreciation for what manufacturers go through so I hold no ill will against Zimmer but I ended up with the short end of the stick.

“Although I am not a lawsuit kind of guy, soon after revision surgery I looked up Zimmer and I happened upon a law firm dealing with Zimmer lawsuits. I have recently retained an attorney and they told me to hang on to the original component that came loose. And I also have my x-ray that was taken in California.

“I also got the staph infection in 2010. From that time until I had the arthroscopic surgery, it cleared up. I know that staph infections in surgery happen a lot and I guess I should have gone to church on Sunday. I would appreciate getting some help from the Almighty but for now I’ll settle with help from my Zimmer attorney.”

Remarkably, Bill hasn’t lost his sense of humor through all this pain and suffering.

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