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Get Back to Moving with Dr. Waterman

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“What good is livin’ the life you’ve been given if all you do is stand in one place,”
– Lord Huron, “Ends of the Earth”

Life is movement. From leaves rustling in the wind to water rushing down a stream, we see movement everywhere. And as humans, we need to move. It’s an instinct we have since birth. You don’t see newborns lying perfectly still – they flail their arms, they kick their legs, they look around at the world surrounding them. That movement only increases the older we get. We start crawling, then walking, and then running.

We’ve likely all heard the second part of Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion that states, “An object in motion stays in motion unless acted upon by an outside force.” There are countless outside forces that could halt our motion – a big one being injury. As orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Jennifer Waterman would tell you, a worn-down ankle can wreak havoc on our everyday lives.

“Foot and ankle is a difficult field because when you take someone’s mobility away you’re essentially taking away their independence,” Dr. Waterman said. “But getting my patients back to a functional status where their pain and mobility have improved is a huge payoff.”

Dr. Waterman is perhaps one of our most unique orthopedic surgeons. She is an ankle fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon who specializes in total ankle replacements. Because of her specialty in ankle care, Dr. Waterman is based out of our Cotton O’Neil Foot and Ankle Clinic. While she specializes in ankles, make no mistake, she is an orthopedic surgeon. If there’s an orthopedic injury of the lower extremity, she can treat it. This includes arthritis treatment, ankle sprains and fractures, Achilles tendon ruptures, and so much more.

“My training was four years of undergrad, four years of medical school, five years of residency, and one year of fellowship,” Dr. Waterman said. “So, between all that training and my years with Stormont Vail, I’ve seen all and treated all.”

If that’s not enough to convince you about how skilled Dr. Waterman is, she is also a flight surgeon with the military. She is part of the 303rd Fighter Squadron out of Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri.

“I was active duty for a couple of years and now I’m a reservist,” Dr. Waterman said. “It’s definitely a challenge to balance work, military, and life, but it’s all so rewarding.”

With what little free time Dr. Waterman has, you can usually find her traveling, enjoying the outdoors on nature hikes, rocking out at concerts, or relieving stress by sweating on her Peloton®.

As for the first part of Isaac Newton’s First Law of Motion – “An object will remain at rest unless compelled to change its state by the action of an external force.” In other words, if your hip, knee, or ankle is impending your mobility, it won’t get better unless treated by an outside force.

And that outside force is Dr. Jennifer Waterman.

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