Off the Bench and Back on the Ice

Patient Story - Hockey player Nathan CekanderNathan – Hip Impingement and Labral Tear

Grandville High School hockey player Nate Cekander wanted nothing more than to stay in the game. But for three years, Nate’s chronic hip pain made playing his favorite game a struggle.

“Several doctors had taken X-rays, even an MRI, but couldn’t find the source of his pain,” said Nate’s mom, Carolyn Cekander.

But she wasn’t giving up. She took her son to see his pediatrician, Stephen McMahon, MD, who, in turn, scheduled an appointment for Nate with Olusanjo Adeoye, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Spectrum Health.

Dr. Adeoye specializes in sports medicine and is the only orthopedic surgeon in West Michigan trained in hip arthroscopy and hip preservation.

“I was able to diagnose Nate with a femoroacetabular impingement and a hip labral tear,” says Dr. Adeoye. “It was fairly obvious to me what was wrong when I ordered specialized X-rays that showed more detail, then confirmed it with an MRI.”

A hip labral tear indicates a tear in the ring of cartilage, called the labrum, which lines the hip joint socket. The labrum operates as a kind of rubber seal to help hold the ball at the top of the thigh bone securely within the hip socket.

Dr. Adeoye scheduled Nate for hip arthroscopy, a procedure that involves inserting a tiny camera into the hip joint through a small incision to identify the source of pain and then repair it. With this procedure, torn cartilage can be smoothed out or repaired, and abnormal and inflamed tissue removed.

“The surgery took less than three hours,” says Dr. Adeoye. “Nate was able to go home the same day, wearing a hip brace and using crutches.”

“I could do more four months after surgery than I could over the entire three years before,” reports Nate.

His mom added, “This surgery and recovery isn’t just about hockey, but about quality of life. We are profoundly grateful to Dr. Adeoye and his team, including his physical therapist, Corey Snyder. It is impossible to express in words what they have done for him.”

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