When I 'kneed' you! How couple helped each other on road back to fitness

They might not be in training for a marathon but pensioners Brian and Barbara Longstaff are on the road to recovery after both had knee replacements carried out by the same surgeon in the same hospital just months apart.

“I’m back working in my beloved garden and Brian his back on the golf course and we’re more active than we have been for years,” said 76-year-old Barbara, of Marston Green.

And 78-year-old Brian, a retired painter and decorator, added: “It all worked out perfectly for us. Barbara had the op first and I looked after her as she recovered then, when she was back on her feet, I had my knee done and she did the same for me.

“As soon as we were both up and about we then worked together to get our fitness back – we’ve encouraged each other and both of our recoveries have been fantastic.

“We started with regular short walks but increased our mileage week by week. We have our wonderful lives back - we haven't trained for the marathon this year but maybe we can do that next year,” joked Barbara, who worked for many years as a hairdresser.

Both knee operations were carried out at Spire Parkway Hospital by consultant orthopaedic surgeon Mr Jamie Arbuthnot who said that having the surgery ‘in tandem’ was a great idea – particularly for older patients.

“Although they are nowadays commonplace, knee operations still take time to recover from and, with patients of Brian and Barbara’s age, it can sometimes be tough going through the training regime necessary to get the full benefit from the new knee.

“However, when you’re ‘in it together’ you can encourage each other – it creates a team spirit and really can make getting fit again fun. I realise you can’t dictate when you will need a knee replacement so you could say Brian and Barbara were ‘lucky’ with their timings – but it certainly has made a difference to their recovery.”

Knee replacement couple treated by Mr James Arbuthnot, knee specialist at Spire Parkway Hospital Solihull

Barbara and Brian putting their best 'knee' forward.

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