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Margaret Nubile

A Pain-Free Hip Replacement

Holy Name Orthopediac - Margaret Nubile

In May 2022, Margaret Nubile tripped over her dog and fell, landing on her left knee. The accident dramatically affected her quality of life: She had debilitating knee pain and no longer felt comfortable driving. The first doctor she went to wasn’t much help.

“He said, ‘You’re a mystery to me. I can’t figure out what’s wrong.’ That is something you don’t want to hear from a doctor,” Margaret, now 83, recalled. She decided to get a second opinion and scheduled an appointment with Dr. Dennis Pfisterer, chief of orthopedics at Holy Name. Margaret has a history with Holy Name: Her longtime primary care physician was affiliated with the hospital, and as a teenager she worked at Holy Name herself.

So what keeps Margaret coming back?

“It’s the care,” she said. “It’s very important when you’re not feeling well that you have someone who will listen, and [everyone at Holy Name] always seems to listen.”

It’s no surprise, then, that Margaret liked and trusted Dr. Pfisterer almost immediately.

“He has a phenomenal personality,” she said, “and he knows what he’s talking about.” Dr. Pfisterer reviewed the results of the extensive testing Margaret had received, and came back with a surprising diagnosis.

“Maragaret,” he said, “It’s not your knee — it’s your hip.”

Margaret thought she had put the hip injury she had five years ago behind her. She had fractured her femur during a fall and needed surgery to repair the break. The surgeon inserted several screws into her bone, but Margaret never felt that her hip was quite right after. Over time, the screws caused the ball of her hip joint to lose its blood supply, which caused it to die and eventually collapse. She needed a new hip, not a new knee.

On February 3, 2023, Dr. Pfisterer performed Margaret’s hip replacement surgery, which went as smoothly as Margaret could have hoped.

“[I] never had a day of pain,” she said.

After three days recovering in the hospital, she embarked on twelve weeks of physical therapy with HNH Fitness. Her physical therapists pushed her to work hard, and as a result, Margaret is back to her routine, including driving comfortably again.

Her somewhat unexpected hip replacement has given Margaret back her quality of life. She felt comfortable enough after the surgery to travel to Georgia by car to visit her first great-grandchild.

“I’ve talked to a lot of people about my hip,” Margaret said. “Each time I tell them: If you need anything done, you go to Dr. Pfisterer. I can’t thank him enough.”

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