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Arden Intengan

San Francisco, CA

“BACK IN THE GAME”

On a quiet Saturday afternoon in the gym, I was reading some bible verses on my phone while I soaked my surgery leg in the Jacuzzi. All of a sudden I heard a voice say, "You look like a movie star." I looked to my right and replied, “that’s an exaggeration”. Then he said, “It’s your face." I was more annoyed with the exaggerated comment than the compliment. I stood up and walked to get some cold water. Then, I walked to the pool to cool off and practiced my walk. Later, I found him walking around the pool and talking to me again. I paused, and soon realized my status has changed. How the human brain changes when your status change. Why only few remember what life was before?

I remember in college, while we were having a group dance presentation, I started being conscious of my crooked leg. As I developed into a teenager I was never one for parties and often was more noticed for my scholastic achievements. School and career were my safe haven as I excelled as a student. Then, I immigrated to the U.S. and I became a successful businesswoman. 

The dream of a straight leg never left me. I have heard and saw the Ilizarov method on TV at one time. Although it's something that I was serious and curious about it was almost unattainable at that time.

I have consulted two prominent major hospitals in my area of San Francisco and the peninsula and these were their comments: "You've come this far. You should be able to just go on and not do anything.” In the other hospital after consultation with the doctors, one of his students said with compassion, "Just wear high heels and it won't be noticeable." 

Years passed. My family had grown, I had a successful career and traveled, and Internet came into being. I started seeking more information about this specialized field. 

I found the name Dr. S. Robert Rozbruch using the Ilizarov method on the internet. I have been to NY few times with my daughter it was an easy feat. The first time I met with Dr. Rozbruch I found him to be very compassionate, kind, and more importantly, a leader and master in his field. He made a comment to me about having a misaligned knee and that I will be prone to arthritis. That year was around 2006. I did a lot of traveling to reward myself. Then 2016 came and I told myself “it’s now or never in 2016.” So I had no option but to schedule the surgery for October 2016.

From 2012 to 2015 before the surgery I had excruciating pain when I walked even one step. The diagnosis was the cartilage on my left knee was worn out “bone against bone”. I had cortisone shots every year for 3 years before the surgery. Now I understood what Dr. Rozbruch said on my first consultation that the crooked knee is like a misaligned tire the threads wear out faster. 

On the day of the surgery it was intense. My determination set in and I made it through successfully with a big help from God (I asked almost everybody I know to pray for me) and with the surgical expertise of Dr. Rozbruch.

I was finally in my room early evening after the surgery. To my surprise I have my first visitor. It’s Dr. Rozbruch and in spite of all the surgeries he performed, he went out of his way to see me and I’m sure he does this to all his patients. He happily said to me, “I fixed the crooked leg”. I said, “Thank you doctor. The pain was nothing, and I will do it again if I have to”.

I said my good night and thank you that evening and then paused, and I asked myself, “Does Dr. Rozbruch realize how he transformed my life and the lives of everyone else he's cared for?” He has given us a precious gift.

Someone asked, “How is it possible that some of our important memories don’t get saved?” We don’t when our life gets transformed. 

On that somber night I found myself lying in bed little that I know my life will change forever. God only knows what I will do next and continue on the good Dr. Rozbruch did for me.

Thank you to the following who made this possible

and some I befriended at HSS

Dr. S. Robert Rozbruch

His office crew 

Dr. Orr, Dr. Yu

Tiwana, Nora, Ann floor mgr.

Joanna, Anna and Carol, Luis, Marlon, 

Sherada PCT Cassandra RN 

Bianca RN, Nat RN, Carol , Ali, Norbu, Radica, Maria RN

Arden I.