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Hip Replacement Surgery Changed My Life

Hip Replacement Surgery Changed My Life

Patient traveled more than 250 miles for care, says he thanks washington Hospital everyday

Joe Cyrek traveled a long way to get his bum hip replaced, but it was more than worth it. He lives in Whitethorn, a small town near Eureka, nearly five hours away. Up until about seven years ago, he was a very physical man who enjoyed surfing, hiking and mountain biking on the North Coast. Even Joe’s work in the landscaping and tree removal business required him to use his body. But by December 2021, the pain in his hip had become so severe, he could barely move. Then a friend told him about the hip replacement procedure he received at Washington Hospital’s Institute for Joint Restoration and Research (IJRR). Within a week, Joe was preparing for surgery.

“Hip replacement surgery changed my life and added 10 years to it,” he said. “I feel 10 years younger. I thank Washington Hospital every day.

It had gotten to the point that Joe and his wife considered selling the 20-acre ranch they love because Joe could no longer do the physical work it requires. “I was pretty much done being physical,” he added.

Joe first met with Dr. Alexander Sah, an orthopedic surgeon and medical co-director of Washington Hospital’s IJRR. “He explained everything to me and I felt confident,” Joe said.

Dr. Sah then introduced Joe to his associate, Dr. Bryant Bonner, who would be performing the surgery. Dr. Bonner specializes in some of the most advanced minimally invasive joint replacement procedures available today, including muscle-sparing anterior hip replacements, complex hip and knee revision surgeries and partial knee replacements. Joe spent one night at Washington Hospital before making the trip back home. He worked with a physical therapist before leaving the Hospital and then met with one in his town a few times.

Feeling Great

“Mostly, I was just happy to be back on my feet,” Joe said. “I started feeling good after six weeks, and I was 100 percent after six months.”

Joe said he is grateful for the care he received at Washington Hospital’s IJRR. “It was the epitome of efficiency,” he added. “I just can’t say enough about that place. I hadn’t stayed in the hospital since I was a kid, so I was anxious. But I was in so much pain I had to do something. I can’t believe how well it all went. I was in a private room, and everyone treated me so well. They had me climbing up and down stairs the first day.”

The institute is located in the Center for Joint Replacement building and features private rooms and lots of natural light. Much of its success is driven by the highly skilled surgeons and a multidisciplinary team of nurses, physical therapists and physician assistants who work together to provide individualized care to every patient.

Today, now that he is no longer in pain, Joe is living a full life with his wife, Lisa. They recently celebrated 41 years together and Joe shared, “Before the surgery, I felt like my life was over, but now I’m making plans. I’m lining up a hike on the beach in a couple weeks. When I get tired, I’ll camp out. Maybe I’ll surf a little, we’ll see.”

For more information about minimally invasive surgeries at Washington Hospital’s Institute for Joint Restoration and Research, visit