Susan Michelle Jepsen

Knee and Shoulder Patient

Knee and Shoulder Patient: I was referred to Dr. Foad in June 2011 for a Tibial Plateau Fracture (3 spots) in my left knee that happened during a pre-fabricated pyramid (already built on the dock) during a Backwater Gamblers’ Water Ski Show in Rock Island.

My fracture had not moved, even though I was holding a pyramid at the time. I was inspired by Dr. Foad’s kindness, concern, his understanding of how important show skiing was to me, interest in doing what was best for me, explaining the pros and cons of surgery, and then letting me make the decision.

I remember him saying “If you were a normal 52 year old, I’d do surgery and put a screw in your knee. After hearing how much you want to ski again, I think you’ll follow my rules.” So, Dr. Foad put me on crutches for 9 weeks. He said he didn’t know if I’d be able to water ski again, but to try it the next season and see how it goes. He said if it didn’t work, he could put that screw in and then I should be able to ski.

I was able to water ski the following summer, without having surgery:

  • Ballet (7th from the right) in the picture with our entire Ballet Line. In the picturesusan-michelle-jepsen-knee-and-shoulder-patient-sports-injury-photo2
    with the 2 girls, I am on the right. I am holding the handle with my left leg, which is the one that had the Tibial Plateau Fracture.
  • Swivel (below) – We have our left foot in the toe hold rope and we turn backwards. This is the leg that had the fracture in 2011.


After 2 years of Ballet and Swivel, I worked back into pyramids, which is my favorite act. I am the first girl on the left on the 2nd tier. I am holding my 11 year old daughter, Brigit, for her first time on the 3rd tier. What a wonderful memory this is!

In 2015, I tore my rotator cuff in 2 places and also had a SLAP tear in my bicep. After meeting again with Dr. Foad to evaluate my injury and explain my options, I opted for surgery in January 2016. My arm is healing on schedule and I should be able to ski again this summer. susan-michelle-jepsen-knee-and-shoulder-patient-sports-injury-photo4

Dr. Foad is kind, considerate, helpful and skilled. I never feel rushed when I’m with him. I wouldn’t hesitate returning to him, if needed.

Susan Michelle Jepsen
Backwater Gambler member for 36 of the 38 years we’ve been in existence

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