68-year-old man climbs Everest after knee-replacement surgery
A 68-year-old man climbed to the base camp of Mount Everest after getting a knee replacement surgery at Apollo Hospitals, Ahmedabad, breaking several myths attached to the surgery.
Indore-based Anil Sharma has always been an outdoor enthusiast and inclined towards sports. But by the age of 57, he started having osteoarthritis of knee joints and his mobility reduced drastically. Walking even 100 to 200 meters was painful for Sharma. This is when he decided to take matters into his own hands and approached Dr KC Mehta, Director & Head, Chandra Knee Clinics, and Director & Head, Knee Department, Apollo Hospitals, Ahmedabad.
Dr Mehta performed the knee replacement with a special technique that causes minimal invasion and less tissue damage with no use of diathermy. Due to this technique, Sharma recovered quickly post-surgery. He walked on the day of his surgery, went to work after a month of recovery and just after three months went on a solo trek to the Chandigarh-Kinnaur valley. In 2015, Sharma climbed the Mount Everest base camp solo with a 10-kg bag and achieved a momentous feat.
Dr Mehta has performed thousands of knee replacements with his unique technique and the audited outcome is comparable to or even better than international norms. He said: “The most common question asked by patients who come for knee replacement is whether they will be able to climb stairs after knee replacement. To which I say if Anil Sharma, who could barely walk 100-200 meters before surgery, can now climb mountains then you can definitely climb staircases at home.”
Now a retired bank employee, Anil Sharma, goes on a new adventurous trek every year after his knee replacement surgery. It includes a trek in Kinnaur-Spiti-Lahaul valley in 2013, Tungnath-Rudranath-Madhyamaheshwar in 2014, Everest base camp in 2015, Anna Purna Devi base camp in 2016, Roopkund in 2017, Langtang valley glacier trek in Nepal in 2018, and Dehradun-Mussoorie in 2021.