OrthoConnecticut

garden-coupleThe condition: Just as Dennis Darria was getting used to retirement, he had an accident: While helping his wife bring in the groceries one winter afternoon, he slipped on ice and, like so many people, used his hands to brace his fall. His right ring finger got jammed in a mound of frozen snow. When the pain, distortion, and lack of movement didn’t subside after a few days, he went to see a general orthopedist. The doctor attempted to spread the finger’s proximal interphalangeal (PIP) joint by surgically implanting a screw, but found that the bone was shattered. He instead placed a pin in the bone.  After a couple of weeks, it was clear to Dennis that something wasn’t right. Dennis was then told his finger joint would need to be fused, with the choice of remaining permanently either totally straight or bent at a 45° angle. Not wanting to give up movement in his finger, Dennis turned to his long-time trusted internist who strongly recommended that he consult Dr. Lunt.

The treatment: Dr. Lunt assessed Dennis’s finger joint and told him that he was a good candidate for a new silicone implant. The implant would replace the joint and preserve some of the PIP joint motion. Although it was a technically demanding procedure because of the fracture deformity, the surgery went very smoothly.  After two months of occupational therapy Dennis had excellent motion and function.

The result: “My hand is back to normal!” exclaims Dennis. Dr. Lunt and the Hand Center’s certified hand therapists gave Dennis back virtually all the mobility he had lost; the difference was apparent immediately. “I hardly notice that I have an artificial knuckle. I rave about Dr. Lunt and his exceptional service to everyone,” Dennis says. Simple everyday things like shaking hands, driving his lawn tractor, and working around the house are no longer a problem for Dennis.  He’s back to enjoying retirement with both hands, and his wife is glad she has her helper back.

 
 

plane woodThe condition: As a self-employed master carpenter and cabinetmaker, Terry S. needs the full use of his hands and arms. When pain in his right elbow and forearm started to affect his work, Terry tried physical therapy, but when that didn’t work, he sought the advice of a surgeon. The first surgeon Terry consulted diagnosed tendinitis and recommended surgery that would entail eight weeks of recuperation. Terry was alarmed about spending that much time away from his business.  Moreover, as an open-water swimmer with a big charity event just a couple of months away, he wanted to get back to normal as soon as possible. A friend recommended Dr. Lunt at Danbury Orthopedics. Dr. Lunt felt the affected area and did strength testing, which was not part of the original doctor’s examination. To him it very evident that the cause wasn’t tendinitis, but nerve impingement, referred to as “radial tunnel syndrome.”

The treatment: Dr. Lunt began by trying the least invasive approach, in this case, cortisone injections. The injections worked well, but the benefits were short-lived. With the symptoms recurring, Dr. Lunt recommended radial tunnel release surgery for long-term relief. But, unlike tendon surgery, the nerve release surgery required just a couple of weeks of recovery.  In addition, the surgery took place in Danbury Orthopedics’ own surgical suite, which streamlined scheduling and the whole procedure.

The result: Dr. Lunt took photos of the procedure. Terry was shocked when he saw how compressed the nerve was inside the tunnel. He returned to work after one week, and by week two could begin picking up materials. At the end of two full weeks, Terry was in full swing both in his workshop and in the pool. According to Terry, “Dr. Lunt is aces. He saved me weeks of recuperation, which allowed me to keep my business running and also enabled me to participate in the annual Swim Across America with my daughters.” At Danbury Orthopedics, we believe nothing equals having your complete health, and we strive to get our patients back to fulfilling their passions as quickly and completely as possible.

 
 

cellestThe condition: Franz Ryerson has been performing on the cello all her life and has worked with generations of young musicians. Her active schedule included teaching five public school orchestras and tuning dozens of violins and cellos each day. However, the last five years were filled with pain due to arthritis in both her thumbs, and it was interfering with Franz’s ability to play the music she loved. She tried cortisone shots, but they didn’t alleviate the terrible pain. A fellow cellist who had very successful surgery with Dr. Lunt, recommended that Franz see the doctor to see what he could do to help.

The treatment: Dr. Lunt took a staged approach to Franz’s case.  An attempt was made to alleviate the pain and disability without surgery, but the arthritis continued.  Finally, surgery was suggested for the left hand and Dr. Lunt had his office create a brace for the right thumb so that Franz could get full use of both hands.  After the initial round of surgery, Franz had just over three months of physical therapy to ensure full movement and thumb strength. Franz’s next step is to schedule surgery for the right hand.

The result: Ask Franz about her thumb and she will say, “It’s been wonderful! I don’t have any pain at all!” Not only is Franz thrilled with her results, she has become a huge fan of Dr. Lunt. “I can’t say enough about the Hand Center at Danbury Orthopedics and Dr. Lunt. I’ve seen him with patients and his bedside manner is something you rarely see these days. I felt great with him.”  Franz also appreciated having a certified hand therapist in the same building so that she could piggyback appointments and have the two medical professionals work closely together. Now Franz is making plans to have Dr. Lunt operate on her right thumb. In fact, she’s spoken about Dr. Lunt so much, her sister -- a violinist who lives right near some of the finest hospitals on the west coast -- is thinking about making it a family affair and flying in to have her own hand surgery at the same time as Franz’s.

 
 

Disclaimer: Any prior results discussed in this site do not guarantee a similar outcome.