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John Moulton’s MACI cartilage replacement procedure

I went to see Dr. Webb when I dislocated my right kneecap. This had happened before, and I had had surgery on it by another doctor in 1997. Unfortunately, it didn’t do enough to correct the problem. After Dr. Webb scheduled me for an MRI, he identified that there was a lot of damage to the cartilage in my knee.

He started by doing an arthroscopic procedure to look at the damage and clean things up, and doing a biopsy of the cartilage in order to grow replacement cells. A while later, once those cells were finished, Dr. Webb did a MACI procedure, which involved incorporating the cells into a mesh that was then sent to the hospital to be implanted into my knee.

Dr. Webb replaced the cartilage with the mesh and also completed a tibial tubercle osteotomy, which involved realigning the tibia bone to support my kneecap, so it wouldn’t dislocate again.

This was in June of 2017, and my recovery went really well. I ended up spending one night in the hospital because it was late when I got out of surgery. I was off all pain medications after only a few days, and was fully weight-bearing on my knee in just 6 weeks. Because of my job as a firefighter/paramedic, I returned to work on October 2, because my PT wanted to make sure I was completely ready.

A lot of my PT involved training that related to my job, which included climbing a lot of stairs in full firefighter gear with a full air tank, which weighs 50+ pounds. On the last day of PT, I climbed 22 flights of stairs in full gear. At that point, they knew I was ready to return to work.

I have no residual pain or restrictions in my job or my daily life. My strength is still returning, but getting better every day. Dr. Webb said it could take a full year, but I can expect to regain 100% strength. I’m signed up for the American Lung Association’s Fight for Air Stair Climb in February, and in the firefighter division, you wear full gear and climb 41 stories.

I had a great experience with Dr. Webb. He was informative, thorough, and answered all my questions. I was able to send emails through the patient portal, and got responses quickly from Dr. Webb or his PA. He explained things thoroughly, before and during the process. He also took my input on what would be best for me, and what was the best plan of attack.

I also had a great experience with his office, they were helpful and responsive. During my initial appointment with Dr. Webb, he had me schedule an MRI. I got a call the next day at 9am to schedule the MRI, and when they asked when it would work for me, I said ASAP. They got me in for the MRI that same day at 5-5:30pm.

I would recommend Dr. Webb highly to anyone else who needs a similar procedure, and have already recommended him to a friend.