When you meet Katie Raupp, 26, you can’t help but be drawn in by her big smile and her zest for life. What you never would expect is the challenges she's had to overcome in her life.
Katie was eager to take on the world when she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia at age 19. Her life changed in an instant into one of doctor visits, medical treatments and hospital stays. She endured a long course of care that included chemotherapy, radiation, a bone marrow transplant and complications so severe that at one point she was in intensive care on life support.
Her personal doctors and an athletic trainer family friend all suggested she look around and consider specialists at Beaumont’s nationally renowned Orthopaedic Surgery department to repair the damage to her joints.
That is when she met David Mayo, M.D. “He was really the first doctor who listened to how I felt and gave me confidence to think I could get past the pain,” explains Katie. “I was in so much pain that I couldn’t even bend down to put on a sock. I truly understood how my grandma feels with her joint pain, but she is 86!”
Dr. Mayo began rebuilding Katie’s joint strength by injecting growth factors from her blood back into her knees and hips to stimulate new bone and tissue growth. He also performed a procedure called a core decompression of her knees and hip to remove areas of dead bone. The results of these treatments worked well and gave Katie the ability to dance at her wedding, something she didn’t think possible. In fact, it’s a thought that still brings tears to her eyes when she recounts the joy of dancing on her wedding day.
“The osteonecrosis in Katie’s hip proved to be worse than in her knees and the hip had to be replaced,” says Dr. Mayo. “Because of her age and desired activity level, we used the longest lasting implant available. The ball part of her replacement joint has a ceramic head and the part inserted into her femur bone has a special coating on it to enhance bone growth into the implant.”
Katie considers her December 2012 joint replacement surgery an early Christmas present and the prognosis with her new hip implant is very encouraging. Dr. Mayo told her that everything looked good on the post-op X-rays, that she should begin physical therapy and he didn't need to see her until her one-year, follow-up appointment.
I knew this surgery was going to be a success as soon as I woke up,” Katie says. “I was out of bed and walking three hours after surgery and the excruciating pain in my hip was gone. I have already gotten off most of my pain medications and am very excited for the future.”
Katie now has a new goal. With the same big smile and excitement for life, she told her doctor, her husband and her mother at her most recent appointment that she is planning to walk or maybe even run across the Mackinac Bridge on Labor Day!
Source: Beaumont Hospital