A New Knee Keeps This Diver Underwater

For more than thirty years, Dick Carey has spent his free time underwater. The 76-year-old from Severna Park conducted oyster surveys in the Chesapeake Bay for decades and has been a volunteer scuba diver for the National Aquarium since 1982. Now he owns a farm in West Virginia and hopes to raise a few cattle. A man like Dick doesn’t have time for the knee problems that had been starting to slow him down. After years of managing his pain Dick decided on a total knee replacement with Paul King, MD, and he’s once again unstoppable.

My knee had been going for a long time. I had some arthroscopic surgery in 2004 and then I was getting cortisone shots. It just got to where I couldn’t continue doing that because it just didn’t fit my lifestyle. I scuba dive, I have a farm, and with a bad knee that you can only stand on for less than two hours in a day just wasn’t hacking it.

Before the surgery, I was favoring my right leg. When the weather was warmer, I was repairing the fence in some areas and I didn’t finish because within two hours of going out to work on it, I was back sitting down the rest of the day because now my back started to hurt. I was seeing a pain doctor and he wanted to give me a block in my back because he said I had a pinched nerve. I didn’t want anyone messing with my back, so, I talked with my personal doctor. He urged me to wait until after the knee surgery.

Nearly seven weeks after the operation I went up to the aquarium and did a special event. You don’t know how good that was. I didn’t want to give up the aquarium.

Soon after, I left for the farm out in West Virginia to continue working on the fence. I’m glad I waited because I haven’t had any problems since the knee replacement. You have no idea how much better it is. So with the farm, the diving and my lifestyle, it’s pretty important to have a knee that works.


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