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Published on January 19, 2017

Teacher Assistant Gets Assistance with Pain ReliefJan Stanley

Jan Stanley

Jan Stanley

Jan Stanley has a nephew in Tennessee who’s a physical therapist, and they disagree on something. Jan argues that her physical therapists in Greensboro are the best, while Steve wants his aunt to agree that he’s the best.

Why the friendly ribbing between Jan and her nephew? Well, Jan feels great about the treatment she received from Kris Leamon, PT, and Jessica Donoho, PTA, her “firecrackers” at Cone Outpatient Rehab Center. They worked with her to solve a number of problems and got her to feeling – and functioning – a whole lot better.

Joint wear and tear from an active lifestyle had led Jan to have total knee replacement surgeries for both knees, one five years ago and the other ten years ago. Dr. Marcus Duda of Piedmont Orthopedics had done those, with great results. But last year, on and off, the right knee began giving her some trouble. She went back to get Dr. Duda’s help, telling him about how her kneecap would slide out, making her knee buckle. Dr. Duda referred her to physical therapy, not just for the knee problem, but because she was having back pain and pain that would extend all the way down her right leg.

That’s where Kris and Jessica, her physical therapy team, come in. Jan says they listened to everything she said. They used special tape to stabilize her kneecap as a temporary fix, and that helped. Then Dr. Duda ordered a knee brace to take the place of taping the kneecap. In therapy she worked to strengthen the muscles all around her knee, and now she doesn’t need the tape or the brace anymore.


Jan Stanley

Jan doing some of her exercises at home.

Kris and Jessica went a step further. Kris thought Jan had issues with her hip that were slowing her down. He did some therapy that Jan thought was pretty tough, but even after the first treatment, it was obvious that she could walk better. Jan hadn’t been able to stand up without pushing off with her hands, to lift her leg into a car, or to cross her right leg over the left, but after therapy she can do these things. She couldn’t walk up stairs without pulling herself up on the railing, but now she can. She doesn’t have pain most of the time, even though x-rays show her hip is worn out and will need to be replaced at some point, just like her knees.

With therapy completed, her knee, hip and back all feel pretty good, in part because she has continued to do the strengthening exercises that Kris and Jessica taught her. She reminds herself to practice the good posture habits she learned from them because that helps a lot too. Jan gives her therapy team a lot of credit, calling them compassionate and motivating. She says, “I’ve had a lot of physical therapy, but those two are by far the best PTs I’ve had.”

Now Jan hopes her husband will get help for his back problem from her two favorite “firecrackers.” As for her nephew Steve in Tennessee, Jan admits she’s proud of him, and glad folks in Tennessee are getting great physical therapy too, maybe almost as good as she’s had right here in Greensboro.

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