Dr. Fornetti – A Sports Medicine Doctor Who Really Understands an Ice Skater’s Special Needs

Posted on Jan 13, 2015, by

(The following is a testimonial provided by and written by a patient’s parent)

2015-01-08 Rios, Paige Ice Skating PictureThis past summer I was at Mercy Medical Center and noticed a poster announcing that Dr. Willa Fornetti was joining the team at the Kennedy Center as an Orthopedic & Sports Medicine doctor.   What drew me to the board was the photo of figure skates.  I learned from the information on the board that Dr. Fornetti was a former competitive figure skater.  Before I left Mercy, I stopped into the Kennedy Center to pick up Dr. Fornetti’s bio-card in case I needed her in the future for my daughter who is also a competitive figure skater.

My daughter (pictured to the left) has had several injuries over the years due to this sport – as you can imagine.  Most recently, in the summer of 2013, we visited her orthopedic doctor at St. Elizabeth regarding recurring knee pain.  X-rays, physical therapy and a brace were ordered, which helped somewhat, but the pain continued.  We revisited her ortho again this past summer who ordered another round of X-rays and physical therapy.  Nothing was helping, so we had an MRI done and thankfully, no surgery was needed.  Her ortho suggested follow up with an orthopedic sports medicine doctor.

I immediately thought of Dr. Fornetti in Oshkosh.  My daughter’s orthopedic surgeon didn’t know Dr. Fornetti, but said, sure – go for it.  And we’re glad that we did.

Dr. Fornetti knew all the questions to ask about my daughter’s sport.  Coincidentally, Dr. Fornetti once coached in Lansing, MI with my daughter’s current coach. So Cool!  Anyway, she suggested physical therapy again, however it would be advanced physical therapy (like a sports personal training program.)  For a regular person who sustains an injury, regular physical therapy does the trick.  For people like my daughter who are competitive athletes, regular physical therapy doesn’t push them enough.

Dr. Fornetti called around to make sure we got the right therapist who could help us.  We were put in touch with Advanced Physical Therapy in Appleton and on the first visit the therapist said they could tell that my daughter was doing all the right things.  Her previous PT’s were giving her the correct exercises, but to get her back to her competitive level, her therapy needed to be kicked up a notch.  They identified new stretches and strengthening exercises.  They made the following goals:  no knee pain and skating without a brace.  Within two weeks, my daughter could tell a difference.  She came home from skating practice beaming about her double loops!  I still don’t know the difference between all the figure skating jumps, bit was relieved and excited for her.

My daughter was hesitant about trying physical therapy again.  She had put so much time and effort into PT before and she was still in pain.  We were both so frustrated that we could not get rid of her knee pain and I was seriously considering making her give up a sport she loves.  Now we are hopeful once again.  I will be sharing Dr. Fornetti’s contact information with Valley Figure Skating Club in the Fox Cities, Great Green Bay Figure Skating Club in DePere and Green Bay and with Blue Line Figure Skating Club in Fond du Lac.  As a unique group of athletes, it’s so important that they know someone like Dr. Fornetti is out there who understands their special needs and may be able to help them – like she helped my daughter.

If I hadn’t seen that poster at Mercy, I know that we’d be in a very different place today.
Thank you so much!

Kendra R.