Human Rights Coordinator, 61 years old, Yonkers, NY
few live life as fully as 61-year-old Teresa Neal. From tango lessons and Italian operas, to exploring European vineyards with friends, she squeezes the most out of every day. But all of that came to a crashing halt when Old Man Winter gave her a frosty surprise.
...the next thing I knew I was on the ground. There was a lovely patch of ice, and down I went.
I was at work. I had a 9:00 meeting. I left my office and I walked about one block and I could see the people in the distance that I was supposed to meet. And as I looked at them, the next thing I knew I was on the ground. There was a lovely patch of ice, and down I went. I could feel something wasn’t right in my leg. When I went to emergency down in the city, they said, “Yeah, our x-ray shows nothing is broken in your leg. So go home and follow up with your regular doctor.” So they gave me a pair of crutches and my son picked me up and I went home. And nothing got better for a couple of months.
Teresa was in misery. The slightest leg movement blinded her with such pain that this once active grandmother had to trade in her dancing shoes for an aluminum walker.
And my son actually said to me, ‘You know, Mom, you may have to use a walker for the rest of your life.
And my son actually said to me, “You know, Mom, you may have to use a walker for the rest of your life.” And I said, “Oh no, that can’t happen. We won’t do that. We gotta fix this.” And it was at least six weeks later, that I went to meet with a Montefiore Orthopedist, who said, “Let’s take an x-ray. Let’s see what’s going on.” And that’s when the hip fracture was diagnosed.
I went to meet with Dr. Pope... And I felt so at ease that he was going to be the one to help me.
I went to meet with Dr. Pope and the first time (voice starts to quiver) I get a little emotional, the first time he walked in, he said, “Don’t worry, we can fix this. We’re going to take care of this.” And I felt so at ease and so confident that he was going to be the one to help me. I’m sorry. (nervous laughter)
Dr. Pope performed a total hip replacement, swapping out Teresa’s damaged bone with a state-of-the-art prosthesis, and giving her a chance at resuming a normal life.
It’s really great when we have the opportunity to give people the ability to enjoy life as they want again.
Dr. Pope:It’s really great when we have the opportunity to give people the ability to enjoy life as they want again. That’s why we as orthopedists get in this business, to kind of see the light behind people’s eyes come back when they know that they’re gonna have their life back and they’re able to do the stuff that they want to do.
After physical therapy, Teresa is back on her feet and feeling better than ever. She is once again dancing, travelling, and has even found a new passion… boxing! But none of these pursuits can compare with her favorite activity of all, spending time with her grandson Thomas.
Thomas likes to run, okay, and Thomas would say to me, ‘Come on, Grandma, let’s run.
Teresa:Thomas is my grandson. My one and only, apple of my eye. Thomas likes to run, okay, and, Thomas would say to me, “Come on, Grandma, let’s run.” And I said, “Well, Grandma runs a little slower than you do.” (laughs) He loves to get down on the, on the floor and play with all his action figures and cars and trucks. We have a lot of fun together. He’s a wonderful, caring child. So I’m very happy to be active again and do things with Thomas.