One Year Post-Op: Our CEO’s Journey to a Pain-Free Life

When Bone and Joint Institute of Tennessee’s CEO Darren Harris sings the praises of Middle Tennessee’s leading orthopaedic practice, he can personally attest to the quality of care they provide. Just one year to the day after having a total hip replacement, he completed a grueling hiking, biking and paddling event…with no pain at all.

Harris sustained a severe injury during his childhood and knew he would eventually need a hip replacement. His pain ultimately grew to the point he was no longer able to be physically active, but as a tenured leader in the orthopaedic industry, he had full confidence in his team to get him back up and running in no time.

“I went in for my hip replacement at 7 a.m. and was home by 2 p.m. the same day on September 26, 2019,” said Harris. “Before my surgery, I set a goal for myself to be able to walk a mile on day three. I started with one lap on my first day home, then encouraged myself to hit my goal. By the fifth day, I was back at work.”

After a few weeks of recovery and physical therapy, Harris began resuming his favorite activities, including running, mountain biking and, most importantly, staying active with his children. After watching an adventure race miniseries on Amazon, Harris and his daughters decided to participate in a race of their own – the Blairsville Extreme Adventure Race (BEAR) in Georgia.

“The race was multidisciplinary, including hiking, mountain biking and paddling, all while orienteering the course,” said Harris. “It’s a 10-hour race, and we were able to finish in eight.”

The race fell on the one-year anniversary of Harris’s total hip replacement, an important milestone for Harris and his family.

“This race gave me the opportunity to be competitive and challenge myself again,” said Harris. “It was important for me to compete with my kids and make sure they have the fortitude to not quit in a challenge. It was great for me personally, but it was more important that I could do activities with my family again.”

Now one year post-op, Harris is pain-free and able to resume the activities he enjoys most – whether that’s competing in adventure races with his family or continuing to lead the Bone and Joint Institute team.

“It’s not how long you live, it’s the life you live,” said Harris. “When pain starts affecting your life and you aren’t able to do the things you want to do, it’s time to find a solution. I had a great experience. I was able to set goals and push myself through my recovery, and now I feel 10 years younger.”