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How to Return to the Stage After a Staph Infection

I've been struggling with a staph infection after an FHL repair for tendonitis. It took several months to treat the infection, and it's left me with pain and stiffness. Will this ever go away?

—JR, Hoboken, NJ


I'm so sorry that you've had complications after surgery. While all surgical procedures have a chance of developing infection, open repairs expose injured areas to the outside air, leaving you susceptible to hospital germs and increasing those chances.

A staph infection creates a large amount of scar tissue that can lead to chronic pain and loss of mobility. Speak to your doctor about how physical therapy can help. Then, prepare to be patient. Dance medicine specialists tell me it takes about a year of treatment to release scar tissue. Initially, you want to avoid a quick fix to loosen these adhesions with a cortisone shot, because it could reactivate the infection. However, this may be a safe option a few months later once the infection is gone. While you may have some residual stiffness after physical therapy, depending on the severity of the infection and scar tissue, the good news is that almost all dancers can perform again.

Send your questions to Dr. Linda Hamilton at advicefordancers@dancemedia.com.

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Courtesy Ava Noble

Go Behind the Scenes of USC Kaufman’s Virtual Dance Festival

Now more than ever, the students of USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance are embodying their program's vision: "The New Movement."

As the coronavirus pandemic stretches on, the dance world continues to be faced with unprecedented challenges, but USC Kaufman's faculty and BFA students haven't shied away from them. While many schools have had to cancel events or scale them back to live-from-my-living-room streams, USC Kaufman has embraced the situation and taken on impressive endeavors, like expanding its online recruitment efforts.

November 1 to 13, USC Kaufman will present A/Part To/Gather, a virtual festival featuring world premieres from esteemed faculty and guest choreographers, student dance films and much more. All semester long, they've rehearsed via Zoom from their respective student apartments or hometowns. And they haven't solely been dancing. "You have a rehearsal process, and then a filming process, and a production process of putting it together," says assistant professor of practice Jennifer McQuiston Lott of the prerecorded and professionally edited festival.

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