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Johanna Faricelli

Wellington, FL

Can you imagine having your body feel as good as it did in your 20's? That's what happened to me! I am a professional equestrian rider, and I rely on my body to be in optimal condition. After many years of a very active lifestyle my hip and spine were really showing wear and tear, I never had any crazy accidents, just a lot of use. A prior doctor in NJ told me that I was too young for a hip replacement.... yet I could barely walk as my bones were beginning to fuse. As my husband watched, my gait deteriorated quickly and I was barely able to get around the stables and show grounds and I would collapse at night from pain. I was not able to sleep or eat from discomfort prior to surgery. I was 48 when I finally said, life is to short to live in pain, and not be able to move. When the best of the best of orthopedic doctors are available in the US at HSS, why would I want to go anywhere else? Going to Dr. Jerabek and HSS for a second opinion was the BEST decision I could have ever made. Dr. Jerabek came highly recommended. His team worked hard to get me into the schedule quickly for a total left hip replacement.

One of the best components of HSS is that the doctors and different orthopedic departments are all willing to work together. During my hip consultation at HSS, I was immediately referred to Dr. Darren Lebl for my spinal issues. Fortunately he was able to see me the same day.

After Dr. Lebl reviewed my case it was determined that I needed an anterior cervical fusion C5-7 and a posterior Lumbar fusion & Lumbar Vertebral replacement L5-S1. He made a plan for me to get "back in the saddle" as quick as possible. Doctor Lebl was patient in his explanations of the procedures and the recovery time. We decided to do the lumbar surgery first, everything went according to plan, there were no surprises, and I wanted to push ahead and have the next spinal surgery so that I could return back to Florida and back to the horses. My goal was to ride as soon as possible. Dr. Lebl completed my second spinal surgery the cervical fusion 8 weeks later. That winter I was back riding as many as 7 horses a day working out in the gym and for the first time trying yoga and tennis. Not only did Dr. Lebl get me back in the game, but it opened the door for new activities as well.

Thank you Dr. Seth Jerabek, Dr. Darren Lebl and the wonderful staff at HSS. They made every part of the surgical process smooth, seamless and positive.