Wall Of Life - Jerica - Fifty Lives

Tissue Recipient

"It all started during soccer when I was seven years old. The doctors always said it was growing pains. Then as the years passed, the knee pain got worse and worse to the point when I was done playing a soccer game; I would not be able to walk because it hurt so badly. Finally, in the summer of '06, we went and got another evaluation and tests ran and the local orthopaedic surgeon determined that it was something that he could not take care of. He referred us to Dr. Crawford at OHSU and Dr. Crawford determined that I needed an osteocondral allograft transplant. He used the analogy that my knee bone was like a pot hole in the road that if driven over and over and not filled will only get worse.

We were put on a donor waiting list in the fall of '06, and we got the call in early April of '07 and I was prepared for surgery. After the surgery I was down for about two weeks. My recovery seemed to be quick. I was in a leg brace for about a month recovering. My knee healed fast and about a year later, the doctor gave me the green light to do whatever I wanted because it was all the way healed.

Today, I don't even realize I had the surgery. The scar is small and healing, as well. In the beginning I couldn't even run and now I can do whatever activities I want to do. I did this surgery so I didn't have to be limited anymore. Dr. Crawford told me that if I didn't get this done I probably would be in a wheelchair eventually. I wanted to be normal and even play soccer again, and I am very happy I did go through the long process because it was totally worth it."