Until mid-2014, Michelle Butler, a resident of Yorktown, Va., was struggling to enjoy life. Due to complications from multiple sclerosis, combined with excruciating and constant pain in her left hip and thigh area for many months, she had not stood on her feet for over two years. “Anything involving movement of any kind was just unbearable,” she said. Multiple specialists told her that she was not a good candidate for hip replacement surgery because of MS and sent her home with only a recommendation to try some therapy. “I was devastated,” said Butler, thinking that nothing further could be done.
Then she heard about Anthony Carter, M.D., FAAOS, an orthopaedic surgeon with Hampton Roads Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine in Newport News, Va. “Meeting him was so amazing,” she remarked. “He listened to me and asked questions and then he looked me in the eyes and said the words I’ll never forget: ‘We can do this!’” Butler was especially touched when Dr. Carter’s nurse reported, with a catch in her voice, that he told the nurse after leaving the examining room, “I’m going to do something to help that lady.”
A pioneer in his field, Dr. Carter has introduced many firsts in the Hampton Roads area, including the direct anterior approach to total hip replacement as well as robotic knee surgery. He has performed both of these types of operations more times than any other surgeon in the area. His expertise at bringing new techniques to the area that will improve pain management have garnered national and international attention.
On May 15, 2014, Butler entered Bon Secours Mary Immaculate Hospital for hip replacement surgery. According to Butler, Dr. Carter was very enthusiastic about the way that the surgery had gone. The pain, which was the result of the left hip being completely out of its socket, had vanished. Dr. Carter also recommended a special motorized wheelchair that would enable Butler to stand up and bear weight on her legs, and he arranged for Butler’s insurance to cover the majority of the cost of this equipment.
Following a month at a rehabilitation facility, Butler returned home and has been pain-free in her hip ever since. “Dr. Carter and the operation gave me hope again,” she said. “Because of him, I went from despair to joy. I am absolutely in awe of his abilities and would recommend him with all my heart.”
“This case was so rewarding because Michelle was essentially an invalid from her crippling MS and severe hip pain,” said Dr. Carter. “Her request was simple. She just wanted help with her pain so she could sit in a chair and it crushed me that nobody was willing to tackle such a challenging case. Now she can independently transfer without pain and, with her new mobility devices, she can actually stand at the sink and do daily chores. I am so thankful that she trusted me to help her.”