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| Patient Story

Steve’s Summit Story

Hear how regenerative medicine at Summit Orthopedics helped Steve, a patient of Dr. Steven Stulc, enjoy all his favorite outdoor activities pain-free.

Steve: I’m Steve Avery. I live in Spirit Lake, Iowa. I’ve been around here my whole life. I’m 77 years old. I enjoy the outdoor activities. Spend a lot of time in the summer sailing. It’s my favorite sport. In the winter, involved in winter sports and particularly skiing. And, in fact, the skiing experience is what caused me to search out regenerative medicine. Had a knee that was bothering me, and wanted to have it corrected. One of the factors that drove me to regenerative medicine is that I had been using some procedures with my local orthopedic, and he was doing everything he could, but he was recommending a partial knee. My research on that indicated that probably, in three years, I was going to have a whole knee then. I was not about to do that. I have too many things I like to do that are athletic. So, I didn’t want to take the chance for that. And I have seen a couple of my friends have knees done, and the rehab is lengthy. I didn’t feel that a partial or a whole knee was an option for my life. So, I was searching for other options.

Dr. Stulc: I became aware of Steve’s case through one of my friends and colleagues, Dr. David Strothman, who’s a spine surgeon here at Summit Orthopedics. He’s a family friend and sailing buddy of Steve’s, and told me that he was interested in doing some regenerative therapies for a really bad knee that he’d done other treatments for and wasn’t finding successful. And Dr. Strothman asked me if I would give him a phone call and talk to him about, and see if he’d be a candidate for regenerative therapy. And I was very ecstatic to find out that he is from my hometown of Spirit Lake, Iowa, where I was born and raised. And we just hit it off over the telephone right away, knowing that we had that connection together. We had a very long conversation. His goals were to obviously decrease pain, stay as active as possible, so he could continue sailing at a high level and skiing at a high level. We discussed his imaging findings and the fact that his knee is in this advanced stage of arthritis, and we didn’t know per se if the bone marrow concentrate injection was going to be helpful for him or not. We spent a lot of time talking about that. He, of course, knew there was no guarantee going into it, but it aligned with his thought process and something that he really wanted to do. And ultimately, it’s something that we ended up doing for him. And thankfully for him, it ended up working tremendously well.

Steve: Regenerative medicine certainly for me has a great place. It has allowed me to participate 14 months, pain-free, in a lot of activities. I’m not a person to be inside or not be active. I’m able to conduct a life in the manner I did back in my 50s and 60s. And at 77, I’m pretty pleased to be able to do these things and to do them pain-free. So, Dr. Stulc has been a Renaissance man for me.

Dr. Stulc: It’s really rewarding to be practicing medicine in a day and age where this is coming of age, and I think, moving forward, we’re only going to improve upon these processes – and to help somebody out like Steve, who’s very active, and his whole life, has lived a very active lifestyle. It’s very personally gratifying to be able to help him out.

Expert care

Summit’s team of experts provide innovative regenerative medicine therapies for those looking for an alternative to traditional treatments. They can treat arthritic joint pain, sports injuries, neck and back conditions—creating an environment to trigger tissue repair and healing.

Start your journey to better function and less pain. Visit our regenerative medicine services hub and find your expert, request an appointment online, or call us at (651) 968–5201 to schedule a consultation.

Summit has convenient locations across the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area, serving Minnesota and western Wisconsin. We have state-of-the-art centers for comprehensive orthopedic care in Eagan, MNPlymouth, MN, Vadnais Heights, MN, and Woodbury, MN, as well as additional community clinics throughout the metro and southern Minnesota.

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