Patient Testimonials

Patient Testimonials - Dr. McDermott


McDermott Testimonial R. Coyston

Testimonial - Richard Coyston


I knew I was a mess. Dr. McDermott was great, even though he thought I was off my rocker when I said, ‘all I want for Christmas is a new ACL.’

They advised me to take four months off, but I was back on the job 10 weeks after surgery. I’m back on the bike having fun again. I don’t want some flowery, pat on the head, I want someone who tells it like it is, like Dr. McDermott. He instills confidence; he’s honest and very professional. The whole team at SRO did what they said they would do. Dr. McDermott is excellent and a really good guy. He was incredibly professional and really explained things.

Richard Coyston was racing his motorcycle at Sonoma Raceway, going about 80 mph, when he took a corner too fast, his back wheel spun out, and he went flying through the air. After he landed, his bike hit him in the back – twice. Among other things, he had broken a foot, a broken wrist, and his knee was in bad shape. For between 8-10 weeks he wore braces, and everything but the knee was repairable without surgery. The ACL muscle was severed from the bone, so that the lower half of his leg could be bent forward and move from side to side. Needless to say, he could not put any weight on it.

Richard, age 53, is from England, where they “fix you at the source”, meaning the hospital. Not being familiar with the U.S. health care system, he went online to research a doctor. His wife came upon Dr. Michael McDermott who, according to surveys, was the best in his field.

The laparoscopic surgery was basically outpatient procedure. Richard was in at 11:30 a.m. and back at home on the couch by 10:30 that evening. He recently bought a new motorcycle, and is back to work doing construction, sometimes kneeling up to eight hours a day when building decks, something Dr. McDermott said even he couldn’t do.


Testimonial - Gaye Gottlieb


“Because of Dr. McDermott’s surgical skill, I have absolutely no residual pain in my right shoulder, and my range of motion has dramatically improved.” ~ Gaye Gottlieb

Since moving to Bodega Bay in 2004, Gaye Gottlieb has found a passion for golf. In November 2010, Gaye was opening a heavy shop door when she heard a horrible popping noise. Gaye had torn the tendons in her right shoulder, and she went to Santa Rosa Orthopaedics where Dr. McDermott determined that she would require surgery to restore the mobility of her right arm. Dr. McDermott performed arthroscopic  surgery on Gaye’s right shoulder. Minimal scarring as well as a faster rehabilitation time are just some of the benefits of an arthroscopic procedure. After going through SRO’s Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Program, Gaye was soon back into the full swing of things.

Having a golf course as my backyard, I find myself investing most of my time into my passion for golf. I couldn’t help feeling frustrated when my injury kept me off of the golf course. With my right shoulder handicapped, my daily routine was a struggle, and I had to do everything with my left hand.

Dr. McDermott is my super surgeon, and my golf savior. He is very thorough, and he exudes a tremendous amount of  confidence when describing surgical procedures. Because of Dr. McDermott‘s surgical skill, I have absolutely no residual pain in my shoulder. My range of motion has dramatically improved, and I cannot thank Dr. McDermott enough for his exquisite work! Since my  surgery, I have been driving  the golf ball about 30 yards further, and it’s a huge relief to have full function of my right arm again. I owe it all to Dr. McDermott!

Dr. McDermott has shown Gaye Gottlieb what thousands of other patients have discovered over the years. Santa Rosa Orthopaedic physicians care and pride themselves on getting you back to the activities you love.


Dennis Russo, testimonial

Testimonial - Dennis Russo


Dennis Russo, a building maintenance professional, has always been active – from motor cross cycling and boxing to playing football well into his mid-thirties. His professional life, power-washing and maintaining some of San Francisco’s tallest skyscrapers, required daily active use of his body. Years of climbing ladders, careful balancing and navigating high- rise scaffolding were taking a toll on his knees. Dennis had always been bowlegged, but the progressing pain began affecting his life. Despite his bravery atop tall buildings, he was  reluctant to consider major surgery. After finding Dr. Michael McDermott online and chatting with other joint pain patients, Dennis made the call.

“Dr. McDermott and his medical  assistant Tammy made me feel comfortable, answered my questions and didn’t rush any surgical decisions”, Dennis recalls. “Dr. McDermott’s initial conservative treatment of arthroscopy and cortisone shots helped initially, but I really wasn’t pain free. I was hesitant to get knee replacement surgery and somehow learned to live with pain – until I couldn’t take it any longer.”

At this point, Dennis was limping sideways when inspecting buildings, uncomfortable being active outdoors, in regular pain and even took up smoking.

“I was beginning to feel like an old man. The last straw was on a trip to Disneyland, where I had to use a wheelchair to get around the amusement park.”

Shortly afterwards, Dennis scheduled an appointment for a knee replacement – that was three years ago. The surgery was a success and Dennis was almost whole. So, when it came time to replace the other knee, Dennis was more than excited to have Dr. McDermott perform the surgery at the new Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital.

“I loved the hospital’s joint replacement program,  private room and incredible staff. My wife even brought the nurses cupcakes in gratitude for their incredibly personal care. After a few weeks of home recovery and great physical  therapy by Pat Hall, I was on my way back.”

Within six months, Dennis returned to work and started playing golf, bowling and working out on the treadmill.

“Despite  being 70 years old and married for 50 years, I really feel young again – with the majority of my strength back. My only regret is not having the knee replacements sooner.” Dennis is a changed man and finally remarked, “Nothing is worse than living in pain and now I’m absolutely pain free. Anybody with joint pain issues should take their life back, pick up the phone and call Dr. McDermott.”


Testimonial - Bob Swedberb


While most of us start slowing down as we age, Bob Swedberg is doing just the opposite. At 74, Bob makes annual trips to the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, home of the land speed records, where Bob works with a support crew on vehicles that go as fast as 350 mph. A retired  mechanic, Bob began noticing pain in both shoulders in his 60s. The pain progressed with time, and Bob’s primary doctor referred him to  Dr. McDermott at SRO. X-rays of Bob’s shoulders revealed significant deterioration of both shoulder joints. Last year, Bob had a total shoulder replacement procedure done on each shoulder with Dr. McDermott, and today his range of motion is completely restored and his pain is gone.

Bob Swedberg currently lives in Lake County with his wife, and the two of them enjoy traveling together. Dr. McDermott has shown Bob what thousands of other patients have discovered over the years: Santa Rosa Orthopaedic physicians care and pride themselves on getting you back to the activities you love most.

“I’ve always been very active with my hands and arms. I have a hobby machine shop in my basement at home and I enjoy practicing carpentry in my free time, but before my surgery I couldn’t work for long before the pain took over. My experience with Dr. McDermott was extremely positive from the day I met him. He was great in the office, in the operating room, and at the hospital during my  recovery. I had my second surgery with Dr. McDermott in July 2014, and today my arms and shoulders feel so normal that I find myself forgetting entirely that I now have prosthetic joints in my shoulders.

My physical therapists at Clearlake Physical Therapy have also been very kind and professional in helping me follow the rehabilitation plan that Dr. McDermott set for me. One of my physical therapists continues to express shock at the range of motion I have on both sides—she told me she had never seen someone who could completely lift his arms above  the head after shoulder replacement surgery. I can even reach between my shoulder blades to scratch my back! I’m absolutely thrilled that I  was referred to Dr. McDermott, and I deeply appreciate all that he’s done for me.”


Testimonial - Miranda Holder


Dr. McDermott, I can’t thank you enough for all of the injuries you’ve helped me through. Without your help I wouldn’t have been able to reach my goal of competing for the UC Davis gymnastics team.

Thank you. Sincerely, Miranda Holder