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Brooklyn resident Elspeth Macdonald with Dr. Joseph Fetto at The Brooklyn Hospital Center
Brooklyn resident Elspeth Macdonald with Dr. Joseph Fetto at The Brooklyn Hospital Center.
  • Hospital News

    Designer, Writer, Dancer, Orthopaedic Patient

    October 2, 2018

    Park Slope Woman Praises TBHC Program and Doctor

    At age 77, Park Slope, Brooklyn resident Elspeth Macdonald is dancing again. Seven years ago, this designer, teacher and writer walked with pain. “I knew I needed a knee replacement in 2010,” Ms. Macdonald says. “But I was scared, and the orthopaedic surgeon I saw at another hospital was terse and did little to put me at ease.” So, she waited. Then last year, when she could wait no longer, her acupuncturist told her, “Go to Dr. Joseph Fetto at The Brooklyn Hospital Center.”

    Ms. MacDonald has been active all her life. She ran three marathons, the last one at age 50. More recently, she enjoyed cross-country distance running. When she tripped while running on a dirt road a few years back, she hurt her left knee.

    At TBHC, Ms. Macdonald found a caring, professional team committed to her best outcome, led by Dr. Fetto, Chief of Orthopaedics. Still, as her surgery approached, she was terrified. Dr. Fetto urged her to contact him over the weekend before her Monday surgery if she needed reassurance, a genuine gesture that meant the world to Ms. Macdonald. From her welcome, to the nurses at her bedside, to transport, to the procedure itself, “Everyone was lovely,” she says. When it was time for rehab, her TBHC care team suggested a few physical therapists they felt would be best for her.

    Just three weeks after the surgery she had feared for many years, Ms. Macdonald was back in a class taught by Dances for a Variable Population. Now, she can walk over five miles a day without constraints, and was even invited by her dance teacher to the most difficult class offered. Ms. Macdonald provides a straightforward appraisal of her experience: “I want a t-shirt that says, ‘Ask me about my knee doc at The Brooklyn Hospital Center.’”

    For more information about Orthopaedics at TBHC, call 718-250-7700 or visit