Joanna Johnson was born and raised in the Austin area. In 2017, after 23 years working for the City of Austin, she decided to retire from what she called, an active lifestyle. These days, Joanna enjoys a slower pace with activities like knitting, crocheting, volunteering at church, gardening, and crafts. But it wasn’t always that way.
From an early age, Joanna was always on the go. She helped work the family ranch bailing hay and running cattle. In her free time, she was playing her favorite sport, softball, which she would go on to play in high school, college and in adult leagues.
It was in college that she suffered her first major knee injury. At that time, Joanna recalls the doctor saying that she would need a knee replacement ‘later’ in life. Fast-forward 40 years and Joanna found herself in that very predicament. In 2000, she was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in her knees and due to her hereditary bowleggedness and a lifetime of wear and tear, the pain began to get worse. Joanna was missing family events and was unable to enjoy time with her grandkids because of the pain.
She decided it was time to have knee replacement surgery.
After the surgery, Joanna leaned on her extensive church family and friends for recommendations on a rehabilitation facility. The consensus was Baylor Scott & White Institute for Rehabilitation – Lakeway.
Joanna had clear goals. She wanted to be able to get around without pain, go on hikes with her family, enjoy activities with her grandkids and stop using pain medication. To help Joanna reach her goals, the physical therapy team worked extensively to help her get back on her feet following surgery. Balance exercises were key to acclimating Joanna with her new knees. Then, it was all about gait-training and strengthening. Joanna’s favorite part of her recovery was outdoor walking exercises. The fresh air combined with natural walking surfaces helped Joanna progress toward her goals.
On the day of discharge, Joanna was able to walk out of the hospital and into a life without chronic pain. She couldn’t wait to get back to a more active lifestyle and playing with her grandkids.