Patient Stories

Restoration Project: Hip Replacement Surgery Helps Lynn Contractor Maintain Active Lifestyle

"Grant Story is a man in motion. When he is not running from one construction site to another as the owner of his own general contracting business, Story can often be found on a baseball field coaching one of his sons’ Little League teams or engaged in an improvement project at his own home in Lynn.

“My days begin before the sun comes up and usually don’t end until after it goes down,” says the married 51-year-old Lynn native and father of five. “I like to keep active.”

As the owner of Story Construction, a company that specializes in new construction, remodeling and repair work, Story is more than familiar with the normal aches and pains associated with labor intensive work. ”Sore muscles come with the territory,” he says. “But it’s usually nothing that a good night’s sleep can’t fix.”

In 2014, however, Story began to experience a new type of pain around his lower back, thighs and groin that was not so easily treated. “This pain felt like a pulled muscle that just wouldn’t go away,” he explains. “It was less noticeable when I was moving around, but it would flare up when I relaxed at the end of the day or after a prolonged period of sitting.”

While not debilitating, the pain intensified and Story worried that it might eventually limit his active lifestyle. Seeking a diagnosis, he first scheduled an appointment with his primary care physician, Jeffrey Gold, M.D., of Marblehead. Preliminary tests indicated that the pain was emanating from Story’s right hip, and he was referred to North Shore Medical Center orthopedic surgeon Benjamin Schwartz, M.D.

Story’s X-rays showed a narrowing of the space between the ball and socket of his right hip due to osteoarthritis. A degenerative joint disease that occurs when the cartilage between joints breaks down, osteoarthritis is the most common chronic condition of the joints, and usually occurs with the normal wear and tear of aging.

As a first step, Dr. Schwartz suggested a conservative, non-surgical approach to treatment using anti-inflammatory pain medication and cortisone shots to manage the pain. “In the long term though, I learned that a hip replacement would give me the best result,” explains Story.

The “long term” came sooner than expected when, after two more months, the pain became unbearable. Dr. Schwartz performed Story’s surgery at NSMC Union Hospital in December and within three days Story was home recovering. After five weeks of rest and physical therapy, he was back to work renovating a bathroom at a home in Marblehead.

“The success rate for this type of surgery is very high, with 95 percent of all patients reporting relief from pain and improvement in function,” says Dr. Schwartz. “I had full confidence that a hip replacement would work well for Grant.” “

All I can say is, the pain is gone,” says Story. “I am glad I went through with the surgery at North Shore Medical Center and couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”