Barry, 76, has enjoyed a colorful and high-energy-demanding career as a news reporter, traffic reporter, and newscaster in Chicago and New York. He worked as a disc jockey and entertainment director for Dick Clark’s American Bandstand, and, presently, he’s an executive producer and creator of major television shows in Hollywood. In a nutshell, Barry has spent a lifetime on his feet, so it’s a surprise to most that he has suffered from hip pain for the majority of his life. “I was born with Perthes Disease,” Barry says.
A History of Hip Pain Caused by Perthes Disease
The rare childhood disease, which began to affect him at age 8, results in the deterioration of the hip. “It caused me to be on crutches,” he said. “One leg was shorter than the other for many years, and I was told I would never really walk, yet, I wrestled in high school and played baseball.”
Barry remained athletic his entire life, pushing through pain and a pronounced limp from Perthes Disease, right up until he met IBJI Orthopedic Surgeon Alexander Gordon, MD when he was 73. His pain had become so unbearable that some days, he said, he didn’t want to live.
Crippling Hip Pain Caused by Perthes Disease
He likened the pain to being stabbed repeatedly. “It wouldn’t let me sleep at night and it was so excruciating that I would be taking many pain pills just to keep it away,” Barry explained. “My sister finally said to me, ‘You need to see Dr. Gordon.’”
As a young child who was diagnosed with Perthes Disease resulting in numerous visits to doctors and hospitals, Barry naturally developed an aversion known as white coat syndrome.
“I said to my sister, ‘I don’t want to see anybody,’ but it got so bad that I made the appointment and went to Dr. Gordon’s office,” Barry said. “I couldn’t walk.”
Initial Visit to Solve Hip Pain from Perthes Disease
Upon meeting Dr. Gordon, Barry’s fears seemed to melt away. “I absolutely fell in love with his demeanor, his style, his professionalism,” Barry says. “I knew I was in the right place. A professional like Dr. Gordon, and his entire staff, make you feel like you’re in the best hands in the world.”
What Can You Do for Perthes Disease?
Dr. Gordon explained everything about the total hip replacement surgery and answered all of Barry’s questions. “I didn’t have any trepidation at all after that,” Barry says, adding that he was more excited to have the surgery and get it over with. “I wanted to be out of pain.”
He had no idea that the Perthes Disease hip pain he carried with him his entire life would soon be a distant memory.
Freed from the Pain of Perthes Disease
Barry clearly remembers what happened when he awoke in the recovery room after his total hip replacement surgery in July of 2018. “I wasn’t in any pain,” he says.
But the best gift came when he started to walk and realized that Dr. Gordon had successfully aligned his legs so that they were the same length.
For the first time in several decades, Barry could walk without a limp. He was freed from the constant pain that had been caused by Perthes Disease. “Every day that I wake up, I smile and I feel like a million dollars because of Dr. Gordon,” Barry says.
Rehab Following Hip Replacement Surgery for Perthes Disease
“From start to finish, I was treated like family,” he added. “From the hospital to rehab to today, I am in no pain. There was no pain in recovery or rehab.”
Life Following Perthes Disease
Barry says he’s gone from being in debilitating pain from Perthes Disease to climbing 100 stairs for exercise. “There’s nothing I can’t do,” he says. “I can go up on a ladder, use a snowblower, and when people meet me and find out my age, they kind of freak out.”
He says he’s grateful to his sister Adrienne for referring him to Dr. Gordon. “Without her, I wouldn’t be in the shape that I’m in right now.”
Referring Others to Dr. Alexander Gordon
Barry and his sister Adrienne, who had partial knee replacement surgery with Dr. Gordon, say they have told friends about the good care they received from him and the entire IBJI staff.
“We are very appreciative of the people who take care of us,” Adrienne says. “Dr. Gordon really helped us through a part of our lives when we were in pain. He really solved our problems.”
Request an Appointment with an IBJI Orthopedic Specialist
Need to see a doctor for your hip pain? Make an appointment—online or in-person—to learn about treatment options that can get you back to feeling your best.
This post is the second story in a two-part series about how Dr. Alexander Gordon helped two siblings in their 70s move better and live better with specialized orthopedic treatments. Read Barry’s sister Adrienne’s story.
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