• By Dana Sparks

Sharing Mayo Clinic: Skier back on track after knee surgeries

December 2, 2018

But Marva and her Mayo Clinic care team were determined that her injuries would not sideline her. Today she's back to being active in the great outdoors.Sharing Mayo Clinic knee patient Marva Sahs outside in the snow with her skis


It's hard to keep Marva Sahs down. The 69-year-old resident of rural Spooner, Wisconsin, completed her 30th American Birkebeiner, a 50-kilometer cross-country ski race, this past winter. This would be impressive under any conditions, but Marva has twice come back from knee surgery to take on the challenge.

"If you want to complain, winter in Wisconsin can be pretty hard," Marva says. "If you want to get out and do things, it's pretty fun. I could never just sit inside."

Marva's fun involves year-round outdoor activity on skis in the winter and a bike in the summer.

Marva had her first knee injury in 2007 when her enthusiastic dog crashed into her right knee. Suffering a meniscus tear and damage to the medial collateral ligament, Marva had to cross the 2008 Birkebeiner off her list. But she wasn't ready to give up on skiing. Marva went to see Andrew Israel, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

"Marva was not only a great a patient, she was committed to her rehab after surgery," Dr. Israel says. "She put in all the work needed to continue at that level." Read the rest of Marva's story.
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This article originally appeared on the Sharing Mayo Clinic blog.

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