Coastal Orthopedics joint replacement specialist helps Sarasota resident glide to ballroom dance title

Nan Miller (Left) with her instructor Michael Pecina (Right)

Nan Miller glides effortlessly across the dance floor at Dancing on the Suncoast in Lakewood Ranch.

Immersed in the instrumental beauty and grace of the “Great American Songbook” floating through the air, the Sarasota resident doesn’t miss a beat. With every note, Nan leaves a lasting impression on her fellow dancers.

Nan began ballroom dancing six years ago, but her journey to the top hasn’t always been smooth. There was a time not that long ago when Nan would be dancing and a sudden stab of pain in her right hip would cause her to stumble and momentarily upend her routine.

The excruciating pain would appear out of the blue and then eventually pass. Nan had been battling arthritis in her hip for at least a decade, but the pain coupled with her limited range of motion and ability to function eventually forced Nan to seek treatment.

“I can’t say I was in excruciating pain all of the time, but I was limited in my function and range of motion,” says Nan, who also plays tennis. “I decided I wanted my quality of life to return.”

Nan turned to Dr. David Cashen, a joint replacement specialist with Coastal Orthopedics, who performed a hip replacement in August 2017.

Following the surgery, Nan was up walking the same day and within a week she was walking without any assistance at all. Three months later, Nan was back to her regular routine of dancing and playing tennis.

“It was pretty amazing,” Nan says. “It really was a smooth experience.”

Since her surgery, Nan has been dancing at least three days a week, which includes two 90-minute private lessons, group classes and socially dancing at various venues in town. Most recently, Nan competed in the Tampa Bay Classic Sept. 29, 2019 where she won Top Silver Female.

“It was a lot of work and very physical, but I’ve noticed such a difference in my range of motion,” says Nan. “I feel so limber with my right hip, especially with the Latin dances. With my left hip, it’s like I’m up against a brick wall. It’s amazing the difference. Dancing has been the perfect opportunity to access how successful and monumental the surgery was.”

While Nan no longer experiences pain in her right hip, she knows it’s only a matter of time before she’ll need a left hip replacement. And Dr. Cashen will be the first person to know when it’s time.

“I have to say that given the recovery was so easy and the results were so wonderful, I won’t hesitate to do the other hip when the time is right,” Nan says. “Dr. Cashen was fabulous, and the whole office was wonderful and very responsive and receptive. Overall, it was a good experience if you have to have a body part replaced. I’m going to be bionic at that point, but I’ll be better than ever.”