Paulette Gangemi: Back in the Game – Patella Dislocation

Patella Dislocation

I have had a lifetime of knee problems starting with a patella dislocation at age 14. In spite of repeated dislocations and unsuccessful surgeries I still managed to ski race in college in Vermont, Rock Climb, Backpack and competitive cycle and mountain bike. Recently in the past 5 years, as I approached 40 years old I noticed I was unable to do basic life activities and athletics. It was a slow progression to inactivity and very upsetting. Other orthopedic surgeons told me to “stop all activity to preserve the joint” and I was truly at a low point. I was planning on training to become a volunteer ski patroller at a local mountain in PA and after seeing non-HSS physicians this goal seemed so far past my capabilities I had almost given up hope. I decided I was going to do everything possible to remain as active as I could, so I started researching HSS. (Best reputation in the world for Orthopedics, so I thought why not, I have nothing to lose)

I made a list of qualities I wanted in a doctor. I preferred a female surgeon, because I felt they may understand my situation better, I wanted a doctor who skied and understood the “skiing culture” and a doctor who went to a top university and specialized in knee instability. Honestly, I had low hopes of finding anyone who fit that description, until I read Sabrina Strickland’s profile.

Read Paulette Gangemi’s Back in the Game story about her patella dislocation.