The echoes of energetic teammates and a pounding basketball have been part of Sara Beth Richter’s life since age seven. When she earned a starting spot on the team at Talawanda High school, the sound of cheering fans was added. But early in her junior year, some of the echoes quieted.
“That season, I dislocated my shoulder eight times,” she recalls, grimacing with the memories. “it affected my game.” And though she was one of the conference’s top players, the injuries also threatened her chance of catching the attention of college scouts. Working with team physician Matthew Daggy, M.D., a sports medicine specialist with TriHealth Orthopedic and Sports Institute in Oxford, Sara Beth was able to remain on the courts.
“But by the end of the season, I knew I’d need more treatment if I was going to play again,” she recalls. “And I wanted to play.”
TriHealth specialists offer the range of services she needed, right in her own community. They treat athletes from more than 30 area teams, from professional teams to youth clubs. They also care for injured people wanting to return to simpler activities, like taking a walk around the gardens of Inloes Park or doing laps at the town pool.
“We know what therapy will allow you to remain active, and we know when you might need more advanced treatment, including surgery,” Dr. Daggy says. “By having the right specialists when you’re injured, you can remain as active as possible throughout your lifetime.”
“Our goal is to help you safely get back to what you like to do, what you’re passionate about, no matter what age you are,” says Bryan McCullough, D.O., an orthopaedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist at Mccullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital in Oxford and TriHealth Orthopedic and Sports Institute. For Sara Beth, Dr. McCullough used advanced techniques to repair her shoulder, without the need for a major incision (or cut). So her recovery was quicker and less painful.
“Everyone who took care of me at McCullough-Hyde was really awesome,” she says. “It was definitely a good experience, and in my senior year playing basketball, I had no problem the whole time.”
That’s an understatement, based on the record books. She scored three times more points that next season and earned top-five spots in the conference for both scoring and rebounds. College recruiters came calling, and this fall, a different gym will echo with her fans and teammates, at Southeastern University
in Florida. “I’m excited I get to continue to play this game,” she says.
Her physicians back home will continue rooting for her as well. “success like that is why we do what we do,” Dr. McCullough says.