Ken Astrup said he doesn’t mind traveling to Jamestown for care. He and his wife, Linda, say they even prefer it.

“I tell our friends and neighbors not to wait to get care. I also tell them to choose Jamestown Regional Medical Center (JRMC).”

The Astrups lived in Jamestown for 46 years. Now retired, they live on the family farm in Amenia, N.D., 10 miles northwest of Casselton. Even though other facilities are closer in distance, Ken said he prefers the care teams at JRMC because they are friendly and easy to talk to. He also said scheduling is simple and he doesn’t have to wait too long for an appointment.

Care for Ken began in 2021. During a golfing trip in Nevada, he remembers feeling pain in his knee.

“The uneven ground bugged me. What used to be fun was now painful,” he said.

He remembers his wife recommending he schedule an appointment.

“She told me to go to the doctor. She didn’t want to hear me complain,” he said with a smile.

They chose JRMC because Linda had a good experience with Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Michael T. Dean when she hurt her wrist in 2017.

“When you’ve got confidence in someone and you know you’re going to be treated right, you stay. Why risk it somewhere else?” he said.


Fast forward to 2021, Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Timothy Volk treated Ken with a cortisone shot in his left knee and later his right knee.

Doctors recommend cortisone injections when inflammation causes joint pain, swelling and warmth. The injection calms the immune system, reduces inflammation and helps relieve pain. The treatment came with a condition, however. Cortisone shots only last for six weeks to three months, so Ken couldn’t count on them as a permanent fix.

“Dr. Volk was straightforward with me and I liked that,” Ken said. “He told me what I needed to have done and left the rest up to me. Dr. Volk is also easy to visit with. He likes to hunt and fish plus, he explained things to me in a way I could understand.”

After the shots wore off, Dr. Volk scoped both of Ken’s knees – the left in 2021 and the right in 2022.

Knee arthroscopy, or “scopes” use small cameras to look inside the knee. The doctor makes small cuts for the camera and to repair any damage. Some patients don’t need a total knee replacement, so this is a less invasive step, Dr. Volk said.

“Scopes are a great option for patients like Ken,” Dr. Volk said. “Recovery is usually easier, faster and less painful than other procedures.”

Today, Ken and Linda are enjoying country life in Amenia. Their three children and five grandchildren visit and enjoy the space.

Though Ken is feeling better, the couple continue to choose JRMC. Linda chose Ear, Nose & Throat Specialist Dr. C.P. Barton after struggling with a temporary loss of hearing.

“I liked him. He cleaned out my ear and now I’m feeling better,” she said.