Honored at Lions Game Days After Robotic Knee Surgery
While many people his age have chosen to relax after years of working, Jim Scott has taken a very different path after retiring from corporate America where he served as a manager for General Motors for several years.
The spry 77-year-old manages his daughter-in-law’s podiatric practice in Southfield and his son Randy Scott’s musical career. Randy is a professional jazz saxophonist with several singles debuting as back-to-back #1s on the national Billboard chart.
His strong work ethic continued despite being diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2015. According to the American Cancer Society, smoking is a major risk factor for bladder cancer, however Jim never smoked. While serving in the Army during the Vietnam War, Scott was exposed to Agent Orange, an herbicide used by the U.S. military to clear vegetation which is a risk factor for bladder cancer. Fortunately, surgery was a success, and he was able to continue his professional career while staying physically active including riding his bike with his beloved dog Tyler in his doggie basket.
“Sadly, my beloved dog Tyler passed away in September 2023, however he was my joy and partner while we rode 5-20 miles per day, weather and time permitting all year round,” says Jim.
Wife’s knee surgery prompts evaluation from Dr. Jason Davis
After Jim’s wife Eyvonne received robotic assisted knee surgery in her left knee in 2021 with Jason Davis, MD, Orthopedic Surgeon at Henry Ford Health, she encouraged him to see Dr. Davis to evaluate his right knee.
“I have bow legs, especially in my right knee. One day as I was sitting up by my desk at work, I noticed my right foot stayed put but my knee went in a different direction which caused significant pain. I also went down with my dog in the basket when I was peddling my bike, so there were things that were happening that signaled, I needed treatment,” says Jim.
Jim postponed getting his knee evaluated for treatment, but after his wife insisted he see Dr. Davis, he arranged an appointment.
“My wife is a huge fan of Henry Ford Health and Dr. Davis, and she has referred many people to him. She simply said, ‘go get it done, you need both healthy knees with all of your activities”.
After meeting with Dr. Davis, Jim said he felt at ease and decided it was time to have the surgery.
Fortunately, Jim was a candidate for robotic-assisted knee replacement which offers several potential advantages over traditional knee surgery, including a speedier recovery.
Dr. Davis notes, “This particular system allows us to create a 3D model of his knee based off a CT scan and plan much of his surgery beforehand. We can make computer adjustments during surgery to get that implant position customized to match his soft tissues and then recreate that plan within a fraction of millimeter with the robotic tool.”
Quick recovery means forward down the field
For Jim, a speedy recovery was important for many reasons. His busy schedule includes extensive advocacy work for several organizations including traveling across the country as a patient advocate for the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network, Gilda’s Club and congressionally directed medical research programs for the Department of Defense. One activity in particular was important for Jim not to miss, not only for him but his grandson Jordan.
“I was scheduled to have surgery right before being honored at a Detroit Lions game as a cancer survivor and cancer advocate. I asked my grandson Jordan if he would escort me in my wheelchair as I was being honored at Ford Field and his eyes lit up at that opportunity,” says Jim.
After explaining the situation to Henry Ford staff, Jim was not sure he would be able to recover in time to make it to the game, but he did not want to disappoint his grandson who was so excited about the opportunity to step foot on the Lions field with his grandfather.
“Next thing I know, I get a call from a gentleman from Henry Ford saying the surgery could be pushed up so that special moment could happen. I didn’t realize at the time that the call was actually from Dr. Davis.”
While the surgery was only four days before the event, Dr. Davis noted the benefits of this less invasive surgery combined with advancements in anesthesia and pain control allowed Jim to be home within hours of surgery and later fulfill his commitment to advocacy.
“It was an honor to help him get back walking on the national stage for an exciting year for our Detroit Lions,” said Dr. Davis.
Since Jim’s knee surgery took place, he has not only been honored for his advocacy work but continues working for his daughter-in-law and son while keeping active with both of his healthy knees intact.
“Even in the cold weather, I’ve gotten back on my bike and continue to ride up to several miles per day,” says Jim. “I’m so thankful to Dr. Davis and the amazing team at Henry Ford who have provided exceptional care throughout the entire process. It has allowed me to keep my mind and body moving and continue to do things that bring me joy. I think if I would stop, I would fade away to nothing.”