Category: Sports Medicine Patient Stories

Dalton Barkley – Patient Story

Problem: As senior year playing basketball for the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Dalton’s season was cut short by a serious knee injury.
Treatment: Surgery to repair a torn ligament
Result: Recovery was amazing, allowing Dalton to complete his degree and start his new job.
Continue reading “Dalton Barkley – Patient Story”

Jerald Hutnik – Patient Story

Whether you’re a fan, a player, or both, once the love of sport gets ahold of you, it never lets go.  Long after your prime playing days are in the rearview mirror, there is always that inner athlete that hungers to continue that competitive spirit.  You could certainly count Jerald Hutnik as one of those athletes.  He is a lover of soccer and had been playing at a high level since high school.  Jerald was a highly sought-after D1 soccer player, who later played professionally overseas, as well as for the U.S. NATO teams.  Throughout all his competitions and even today, Jerald has always considered himself lucky that he had never sustained an injury from playing soccer.  As a goalie, you use both your hands AND feet…a position that over time, could see some wear and tear on your joints and muscles.  After playing for years, that was something that Jerald was prepared for.  What he didn’t see coming was a pair of injuries that put him on the path to see Dr. James Hughey.

Jerald is the type of athlete who will give his all, even if his body has other plans.  That mindset was in play one day when, while playing in an Adult Premiere League, he hyper-extended and tore the biceps in his left arm, attempting to block a kick.  Jerald had his arm repaired by Dr. Hughey and was able to return to play.  A little more than a year later, Jerald found himself back on the playing field.  Feeling strong and confident at goalie, Jerald was back and “Game Ready.”  Unfortunately, in the middle of a game while attempting to throw a ball in to play, he injured his right arm in the exact same way he did his left.

Jerald found himself in a very familiar spot, after having seen Dr. Hughey once before for the same injury.  “I had worked with his staff the first time, and they were all so polite and friendly.  They remembered me and my case.  I wasn’t just another number,” says Hutnik.  “Dr. Hughey was right on point with my diagnosis.  There was no guessing.  He told me everything I needed to know, before I needed to know it.  Doc was very knowledgeable, friendly and had a great bedside manner, which is very important to me.”  Jerald explains how both surgeries and recoveries went very well, with no problems at all.  “These guys are quality pros.  They treat you right and you’re going to have great service.  When you have folks who are knowledgeable and friendly, you’ll have a great experience.”

Jerald has made a 100% recovery from his injuries, and although he isn’t playing as much as before, he gets much enjoyment from being the head soccer coach for two club teams and a local school.

Dr. James T. Hughey

Dr. James Hughey is an orthopaedic surgeon and a member of The Orthopaedic Center Sports Medicine Team. Before joining TOC, Dr. Hughey completed a fellowship in Sports Medicine at Andrews Research and Orthopedic Institute in Gulf Breeze, FL, where he served as team physician for area high schools and served as assistant team physician for Pensacola’s Cincinnati Reds AA baseball team.

Request an appointment today!

Zach Taylor – Patient Story

Zach, Sports Medicine Patient | The Orthopaedic Center | Huntsville, ALOne of the most exciting things about being a young student-athlete is the potential opportunity to play at the collegiate level. The off-season is a time for an athlete to grow, learn, and improve upon areas they may have been challenged with in the previous season or the time to improve upon their overall game. Conditioning, weights, and practices are all areas athletes focus on to bring their game to the next level.

Zach Taylor, a Division I prospect and James Clemens High school football standout, was faced with this challenge when he injured his knee during a routine off-season practice. The 6-foot, 5-inch 320-pound offensive lineman took a hit to the side of his knee when another player landed on it awkwardly.  Trainers from the Huntsville Hospital Sports Center attended to his injury and brought Zach in to see the Team Physician, Dr. John Greco. With only weeks to go before the start of the season, Dr. Greco examined Zach, gathered additional imaging, and felt Zach could play through the season with the aid of a brace and rehabilitation. Indeed, Zach was able to finish his junior year, and accumulate more than two dozen scholarship offers in the process.

After his season ended, Dr. Greco addressed his knee surgically and Zach then started the rehab process all over again. Zach states that one of the hardest parts of his recovery was rebuilding his confidence while rehabbing the strength in his knee. Zach had difficulty with getting his stride back during the spring season following his surgery, but he was able to come back stronger than ever for his senior football season. Life has a way of throwing you a curveball, sometimes you land in the sand-trap, or other times you fumble the ball, but the way he recovered from those setbacks shows true determination and grit.

Says Zach: “Dr. Greco made things easy for me to understand and took the time to explain everything to me. He knew it was a very important time for me as I was being recruited by many schools… but, he reassured me that I would be just fine, and I would be ready. I ended up with 20 scholarship offers.  Dr. Greco was always honest, so it was easy to trust what he said. His team treated me great, which I really appreciated. The Athletic Trainers, along with his team, provide me with a top-shelf experience.”

Zach has accepted an offer to play football for the University of Alabama-Birmingham for the 2020 season.

Dr. John J. GrecoDr. John Greco is a member of The Orthopaedic Center’s Sports Medicine Team and board-certified in orthopaedic surgery and sports medicine. He specializes in arthroscopic and open reconstruction of the knee and shoulder. Dr. Greco is Chief of Huntsville Hospital’s Sports Medicine program and is Team Physician for Alabama A&M University, Huntsville Havoc Hockey, City of Madison and multiple other schools and counties.  Dr. Greco is a volunteer Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama School of Medicine, Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine, and the University of Alabama in Birmingham Medical School.  Dr. Greco brings his expertise and care to our Huntsville, Madison and Scottsboro locations.

Request an appointment today!

Joel Schrenk – Patient Story

Joel Schrenk loves football and has coached football at the high school level for 25 years.

Shortly before the start of the 2019 season, Coach Schrenk accepted the job as the Head Coach for Hazel Green High School football. It wasn’t long after he arrived that he was introduced to Team Physician Dr. Stan Davis and the rest of the sports medicine team; however, Coach was surprised to learn the next time he would see Dr. Davis wouldn’t be on the football field, but in his office at TOC.

Shortly after the start of the 2019 season, Joel’s left shoulder started to hurt. The pain built up to a point that it would keep him up at night. It hurt so much that just handing money to a drive-through cashier was very uncomfortable.  But, no matter how much it hurt, dealing with his injury during football season was just not part of the game plan for Coach.

He first spoke with one of the school’s Certified Athletic Trainers (AT) about his pain, and they gave Coach some exercises that helped him make it through the season. The exercises helped, but the Athletic Trainers knew Coach would need to follow-up with Dr. Davis to repair the damage that was at the root of all his pain.  Dr. Davis took a look at Coach’s shoulder and discovered he had tears caused by bone spurs and needed to have his labrum cleaned up as well.

Coach Schrenk on the Hazel Green football sidelineJoel already knew that Dr. Davis, one of TOC’s Sports Medicine Specialists, had helped several athletes on the Hazel Green football team with their injuries. The Athletic Trainers from Huntsville Hospital Sports Center and Dr. Davis work seamlessly together to provide a comprehensive sports medicine program for Hazel Green High School – a program designed to help everyone with their orthopaedic needs.

For Coach, experiencing the care of Dr. Davis on a personal level stood out to him in very memorable way.  He was so impressed that Dr. Davis asked to pray with him before his surgery.

Coach’s shoulder was repaired, and he was well on his way to returning to the sidelines.  He attributes his success to Dr. Davis’ expertise and a strong rehabilitation program for making a real difference.  “The rehabilitation process was not easy. But if you put in the hard work, and do what they tell you, you will heal and do well.”

When asked what you would want others to know about Dr. Davis, Joel quickly answered, “Oh man, He’s good. He has an excellent bedside manner; he’s an encourager and I have confidence in Dr. Davis.”

Dr. Stanton Davis | The Orthopaedic Center

Dr. Stan Davis, former team physician for the San Francisco 49ers and Auburn University, is a member of the TOC Sports Medicine Team and specializes in arthroscopy and the treatment of the shoulder, elbow and knee. Double board certified in orthopaedic surgery and orthopaedic sports medicine, with advanced training in the rehabilitation and surgical treatment of injuries in active people, Dr. Davis utilizes the latest techniques, including orthobiologics, such as stem cell and platelet rich plasma, to reduce pain and speed his patients’ return to peak performance.

Request an appointment today!

Sean Webster – Patient Story

As a young and talented athlete, it’s only natural to explore all avenues of sport to determine the ones you like, and the ones where your talents shine brightest.  For Sean Webster, his skills were never brighter than when he was on the football field.  This James Clemens High School senior had strapped a helmet to his head since he was 5-years old, but it was a short stint on the wrestling team his sophomore year that brought this athlete to see Dr. Michael Cantrell.

Shortly after beginning his freshman year, Sean picked up the sport of wrestling.  His time was cut short the following season after suffering a serious knee injury.  Sean worked through physical therapy, but both he and his parents were not seeing improvements.  With his condition in limbo, Sean began to wonder if he would ever be 100% again, or if he would ever play sports again.  He had his sights set on joining the Air Force Academy – but even that future was in jeopardy.  Sean was heartbroken.  Dr. Cantrell and his team went to work knowing exactly what they needed to do to help Sean:  fix his knee and assure him his dreams were very much still in sight.

After performing a medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction, Dr. Cantrell was successful in stabilizing Sean’s knee.  He was on the road to recovery.  But Sean’s recovery was going to take a lot of work and sometimes, it’s not uncommon for rehabilitating patients to have thoughts of frustration and doubt.   “Dr. Cantrell worked with Sean and got it out of his head,” says Sean’s mother, Rikki.  “You’ve got it!  Dr. Cantrell told him…You are good to go!  You can do this!”

Dr. Cantrell continued to use Sean’s follow-up appointments to help “coach” him through his rehabilitation.  He reminded Sean to stay strong, not to get frustrated and know that he had the entire Cantrell team in his corner.  That was just the encouragement he needed to make it back to the football field for his junior year and help the James Clemens Jets to another winning season.

“Dr. Cantrell was very thorough and helped make the process stress-free.  We loved his staff and encourage anyone who may be going through something similar to just hang on.  Stay the course, stay committed and don’t give up.”

Dr. Michael Cantrell - The Orthopaedic Center

Dr. Michael Cantrell is a member of The Orthopaedic Center Sports Medicine Team. Board certified in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine, Dr. Cantrell specializes in arthroscopic and open reconstruction of the shoulder and knee. This includes shoulder and knee arthroscopy, tendon repair, and ligament reconstruction.

Request an appointment today!