18:12 PM

53-year-old Long Island woman is a world champion gymnast

WABC-TV reports Lori Vollkommer (53) has returned to the world of competitive gymnastics after recovering from surgery performed by HSS orthopedic trauma surgeon Gregory S. DiFelice, MD, to repair her ruptured anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in 2017. Five months after her surgery, Lori was back on the mat training.

Dr. DiFelice credits Vollkommer’s quick recovery to the surgery in which he reattached her ACL vs. reconstructing it. However, he noted Vollkommer was a good candidate for the surgery based on the particulars of her injury and age. The surgery is not recommended for people under 30 years of age, particularly teenagers, said Dr. DiFelice. “It doesn’t work for everybody. You have to have a specific type of tear,” he said.

Andrew D. Pearle, MD, chief of the HSS Sports Medicine Institute added, "HSS pioneered the ACL repair technique over 40 years ago, and we are still exploring the most appropriate indications for its use. It may be appropriate for treating extremely rare types of knee injuries among older patients."

In 2018, Vollkommer won five gold medals at the International Association of Independent Gymnastics Clubs World Championships in Orlando, and she continues to train three days a week.

Read the full article at ABC7ny.com. This segment also appeared during the 4pm news hour on September 2, 2020.