Navy veteran Robert Adler has seen his share of pain and injury, he crashed in the private plane he helped build in 2004 and broke his back, then he broke multiple bones in a motorcycle accident on his Harley Davidson in 2012. So, it was ironic that a slip and fall on some ice was what brought Robert to his pain threshold last February. Injections and physical therapy did not help, and he was unable to find any position that was comfortable. What he didn’t know was that his old spinal fusion hardware had broken in his fall, and a bone chip had lodged into a nerve in his back – what this Colorado native did know was that he was in the worst pain he had ever experienced. After living on four different submarines during his Navy career, riding motorcycles, and flying airplanes, Robert was now “paying the price for living life on the edge.”
Upon meeting Dr. Aguwa, Robert felt immediately comfortable – his humor and relaxed manner added some much-needed levity to Robert’s serious situation, and his professionalism made Robert feel at ease. Dr. Aguwa took the time to explain the problem, the diagnosis and the surgery to Robert and his wife, Marcia. Robert underwent a 7-hour, revision lumbar fusion surgery in May and was relieved to be pain free when he woke up. Dr. Aguwa appeared in Robert’s room at 6:00 am in a Princeton Tigers t-shirt and jeans, he spoke at length with Robert about how he was feeling before he mentioned his wife was in labor with their first child on another floor in the same hospital! Robert and Marcia felt it was a demonstration of the dedication Dr. Aguwa has to his patients that he would check on Robert before his son was born.
After 18 years in the Navy and 26 years as a Senior Regional Support Engineer for IBM, this retired 69-year-old is anxious to get back to traveling. He and Marcia usually put 30,000+ miles on their RV each year, so they are looking forward to a trip to Arizona in February. And Robert is on his eighth Harley in 51 years, this one is a trike, so it’s safer, and he recently took it to Sturgis. He is back at the gym three times a week and has resumed his walks and hikes with Marcia. Robert “cannot say enough” about Dr. Aguwa, he says his experience with Dr. Aguwa was "the best experience with the medical community I have had in my life.” He and Marcia have even been able to see pictures of Dr. Aguwa’s son in the baby onesie they bought him.