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Matt. Keller of Foothill Ranch was 35 years old and still playing competitive soccer when he sought treatment for pain in his hip. He was surprised to be diagnosed with osteoarthritis in his hip, a degenerative joint condition that would eventually require surgery. Three yeats later, the pain was constant and he had difficulty walking th e soccer field to coach his son's soccer team. He turned to St.Joseph Hospital orthopedic surgeon Dr. Steve Barnett, who performed the new anterior-approach hip replacement in August.

Matt says that every day he's feeling better."Dr. Barnett is a great doctor, and th e people in the hospital had n othing but good th ings to say about him," says Matt. "The hospital and nurses were great."

Judith Florman of Santa Ana has had two hip replacement surgeries. Her right hip was replaced four years ago and her left hip earlier this year, this time using the anterior approach (described on page 4) . Dr. Steve Barnett, an orthopedic surgeon at St. Joseph Hospital, performed both surgeries. Both were successful, but she describes th e difference between the procedures as 'amazing." Florman recalls, "The first .time, I had an 8-inch incision and was in the hospital for five days. I had a lot of restrictions and couldn't bend forward for fear I would dislocate my hip. I used a walker for the first two weeks, and th en a cane for a few more weeks.

"The second time around I did a lot of re search and learned about the anterior procedure, which was offered at a hospital in Los Angeles. I was planning to go there until I found out that Dr. Barnett at St.Joe's was doing it."My recuperation this tim e was so much faster. I had the surgery on a Friday and that day the hospital staff had me walking stairs. I was home in 24 hours with almost no pain, using a cane.

The following Tuesday I was attending a play at the South Coast Repertory, and I was driving two weeks later. lfit weren't for the four-inch in cision scar, I would completely forget I even had the surgery. At age 72, I have a full range of motion. I lift weigh ts and often walk four miles with no pain... I highly recommend the procedure."