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Paul Mila, shark in background

Paul Mila, age 76, lives an active lifestyle, coaching tennis and scuba diving in the vibrant coral reefs off of Cozumel, Mexico. The Carle Place resident is also an author, having penned children’s books and adventure fiction focused on aquatic adventures.  

But a sudden shoulder injury left the active senior on the sidelines. “I lifted my luggage the wrong way at the airport,” said Paul. “Holding the bag and twisting my arm, I felt a stabbing twinge of pain and said, ‘that’s not good!’”

An MRI revealed that Paul had a tear in his tendon and that he would need rotator cuff surgery. He knew St. Francis Hospital & Heart Center® (Roslyn, NY) was the place to go, having previously received a successful rotator cuff repair on his other shoulder from Neil Watnik, MD, St. Francis Hospital & Heart Center® Orthopedic Surgeon. Dr. Watnik performed minimally invasive arthroscopic repair utilizing the latest technology.  

Paul explains: “Every time, Dr. Watnik has done a fantastic job. He got me back in the game. The whole experience of St. Francis Hospital is first-rate. From the time you check in to the time you leave, everyone is attentive, helpful and polite.”

Paul is now fully healed, following surgery and physical therapy. His wife, two daughters, and five grandchildren are all very happy to have him back to his active lifestyle. He plans to return to undersea diving in Cozumel. He may even have a new partner joining him—Dr. Watnik, who was inspired by Paul to pursue his own certification in scuba diving. In the meantime, Paul continues to write stories about underwater adventures, adding to his library of published works. 

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