I met my orthopedic surgeon Dr. Scott Shoemaker in 1999. I had a severe 2 way curve in my spine called scoliosic, I couldn’t sit up and I was confined to a hospital bed in my living room. I also had to be home schooled. Dr. Shoemaker placed 2 rods on each side of my spine along with plates, screws & wire. After a recovery period and removing my tailbone that broke I was able to not only sit again but sit up straight! He’s also done a double hip resection (disconnecting my hips from their sockets) because both my hips were popping out of their sockets and causing pain. As well as doing many tendon releases to help with my muscle tone.
Dr. Shoemaker & I have been through so many surgeries together that I think he knows my body inside and out. He always manages to plan ahead, usually after I go under anesthesia my stomach shuts down and I develop an ileus he places a nasogastric tube when I’m asleep so that it won’t take my stomach as long to recover. He knows what I need and when an unexpected problem rises he does what ever he needs to do to fix it while making me comfortable and getting me on the road to recovery as soon as possible. I truly don’t think I could trust another orthopedic surgeon, simply because it’s extremely hard to gain the amount of trust we have with each other. I am blessed to have him and I am very proud to say I consider Dr. Shoemaker my hero!
I met Dr. Shoemaker’s kids one time on the unit and his kids and I have become very close friends. Every time I have a surgery Dr. Shoemaker’s kids always write me letters and cards to make me feel better. One out of his 4 children wrote “Jess I’m sorry you have to put up with my dad, please tell me how you do it!” That card will always be one of my favorites! HA HA!
Dr. Shoemaker was a fan of the Kaiser pediatrics Rainforest Unit Renovation from the word go. He and his family come to the benefit every year, (that would be 6 straight years now) He always speaks on a number on different topics, how great the rainforest project is for his patients and he even noticed a happier demeanor from his co-works & staff. He also does an amazing job explaining to people what Cerebral Palsy is as well as the different severities so the public can understand it better.
I may not know much but I know one thing for sure, I would not be where I am today without the help of my amazing orthopedic surgeon, thank you Dr. Shoemaker! Actually I might know one more thing, every one of your kids is lucky to have you as their dad.