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Old 11-18-2006, 10:40 AM
mmglobal's Avatar
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Default Welcome to iSpine!

Click here to read the welcome post in the community support forum
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1997 MVA
2000 L4-5 Microdiscectomy/laminotomy
2001 L5-S1 Micro-d/lami
2002 L4-S1 Charite' ADR - SUCCESS!
2009 C3-C4, C5-C6-C7, T1-T2 ProDisc-C Nova
Summer 2009, more bad thoracic discs!
Life After Surgery Website
President: Global Patient Network, Inc.
Founder: www.iSpine.org
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Old 07-09-2009, 04:55 AM
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Hello there, I'm brand new to this post and I'm glad that I found this discussion forum. My name Is Josh Piceno and I live In Aurora Il. and I wanted to know if theres a good Neuro Surgeon in the Chicago area that is reputible in disc replacement. I have a bulging disc in my c4 c5 section and I'm 28 yrs old. My neuro recomended a disc replacement and I'm a bit scared since I never had a surgery done before. How safe is it and is it possible the thing could slip and hit an artery. What are the risks of getting a replacement and are they slim. And last, what is the long term affect? how long is this artificial disc supposed to last?
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Old 07-09-2009, 03:30 PM
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Hey Josh from Aurora - I would suggest you include the Rush doctors they have BOTH Spine Orthos Goldberg is one of them & Also Spine Neurosurgeons - go to the web & find them & the contacts. Dr An is another at Rush a associate with Goldberg many top notch spine doc's there - you can put your post in the Forum jump below here for ISpine.
I am a former Illinioan - Best Jill
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Old 07-09-2009, 07:17 PM
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Hi Josh,

Welcome to the forum. Glad you found us but I'm sorry for you pain. I'm glad Jill was able to provide some referrels for you. I do think this post is best on its own thread. Perhaps Mark will move it.

To answer your questions, though any surgery, especially spine surgery is not without risk, I've never heard of an ADR slipping and hitting an artery. So far, I know of no ADR wearing out but the jury is still out since this science is not old enough to gather a lot of long term statistics. But then again, if your pain is severe enough, your only other option is fusion, not that great an option for someone so young.

There are many ADR recipients that put their respective discs through pretty drastic paces, bowling, tennis, skiing - even a police officer is back on duty and so far, the ADRs are holding up great.

You also need to understand that fear is a part of this whole process. We all experience(d) crippling fear in living with extreme pain, making whatever decision to move forward or not, and awaiting surgery. But I'd like to add a great big caution. Spinal surgery is a huge decision that alters your spine forever. Making an INFORMED decision is just as important as your choice of doctors. There's no going back and should you choose an ADR, revision is difficult. Please get yourself educated. Ask your doctors questions. Get second opinions. Ask us questions.

Then you also have insurance issues to deal with as most won't cover ADR surgery - though some are beginning to come around.

I do wish you good luck as you begin this journey, Dale
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Old 07-09-2009, 09:52 PM
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Thank you so much for your reply, and I'm glad that ther's people out there helping one another and giving good advice. Rush Copley will be the place for my surgery and I have A brother who is a Doc(Nephrologist) and told me the same thing about asking my neuro questions and concerns. My injury is job related so workmans comp will handle the payments. It's now up to me to decide whether I want it or not. My Neuro Is Daniel T Leich And he advised that I go with the procedure since he wants to keep the motion in my neck rather than the fusion. I have done tons of homework on this device and all seem to be promising. Thank you so much Dale & Jill I will keep you posted on my decision and thanks for the comforting response.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:07 PM
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Default News

Is costlier spinal surgery worth it?

By Carla K. Johnson

Associated Press

CHICAGO - A study of Medicare patients shows that costlier, more complex spinal-fusion surgeries are on the rise - and sometimes done unnecessarily - for a common lower-back condition caused by aging and arthritis.

What's more alarming is that the findings suggest these more challenging operations are riskier, leading to more complications and even deaths.

"You have one kind of operation that could cost $20,000 and another that could cost $80,000, and there's not good evidence the expensive one is being used appropriately in the majority of cases," said Eugene Carragee of Stanford University Medical Center.

Add to that the expense for patients whose problems after surgery send them back to the hospital or to a nursing home, and "that's not a trivial amount of money" for Medicare, Carragee said. He wrote an accompanying editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association, where the federally funded study appears Wednesday.

The cost to Medicare, just for the hospital charges for the three types of back surgery, is about $1.65 billion a year, the researchers say.

All the patients in the study had stenosis in their lower backs, a painful squeezing in the spine that is most common in people over 50. The researchers compared the risks for three types of surgery for the condition: decompression, simple fusion, and complex fusion.

"Some seem to be associated with higher complication rates than others," said lead author Richard Deyo of Oregon Health and Science University in Portland. "It's not necessarily true that the more aggressive surgery is better."

Patients should ask their doctors about alternatives to complicated operations, Deyo said: Could steroid injections and physical therapy be tried? Would a simple decompression procedure be as helpful as a spinal fusion and with less risk?

In a decompression procedure, the simplest method in the study, a surgeon cuts away part of the bone that is painfully pressing on nerves. It can cost about $30,000 in hospital and surgeon fees.

For a fusion, a surgeon binds two or more vertebrae together using a bone graft, with or without plates and screws. The researchers defined a complex fusion as one involving three or more vertebrae or more than one side of the spine. Fusions cost $60,000 to $90,000.

The researchers analyzed data on more than 32,000 Medicare patients who had one of the three surgeries in 2007.

About 5 in 100 patients who had simple or complex fusions suffered major complications such as stroke, compared with 2 in 100 with decompressions. The risk of death within 30 days after surgery was different, too: 6 in 1,000 for complex fusions, 5 in 1,000 for simple fusions, and 3 in 1,000 for decompressions.
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Old 07-12-2010, 03:28 AM
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Posts: 138
Default Josh

Just welcoming you to the forum. Thanks for sharing.
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Chemically sensitive disc/Annular tears, DDD, mild bulging, facet arthritus

Dancing accident in 96. tried PT, acupuncture, pilates, pain mgmt. nothing worked. Epidurals, facet blocks, caudal blocks, discogram. Opiates for ten years, oral prednisone, toradol inj. & more.

Two level spinal fusion with BMS, cages, hardware. due to bone density problems from chemotherapy, they had to go in front and back. Surgery Nov. 6, 2010. So far no regrets.
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Old 08-15-2010, 02:21 AM
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Default Hello

I'm Michelle from Florida. My husband has been in chronic pain for the last 3 years. Day in, day out, 24/7. He had an experimental surgery last year, that actually made him worse. Our quality of life has deteriorated as he cannot do anything. Trips even 30 minutes or less are almost too painful to even consider. So unless we're going to the pain doctor or a short jog to the grocery store, we do nothing. He can only walk for short periods of time, and our intimate life is non existent. I hurt for him, because there is no relief. Not even in sleep. I'm hoping we might, through this board, learn of ways to cope, and even maybe some medical ways to ease his pain. He is only 40 years old, so this is very disturbing to him. Anyway, I just wanted to drop in and say hello.

Michelle
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Old 08-15-2010, 06:50 PM
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Hi Michelle,

Welcome to the forum. We hear you pain. Life for a caregiver is often overlooked. Reaching out is not only a cry to help your husband but you as well.

Please start a new post (thread) and tell us more details. Exactly what is your husband's condition? What procedure did he have that made it worse? What is your pain management doctor doing for him and what has he recommended?

With this information we can better understand your circumstances and go on from there.

Dale
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3 level Prodisc adr S1-L3, Oct 12, 2005
Dr. B in Bogen, Germany
Severe nerve damage in left leg, still working on it
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Old 05-08-2012, 04:52 PM
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Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1
Default CBS- New Hope 4 back pain !

I found this web site after reading the article on back pain by CBS . It was also the cover story on Sunday Morning this past Sunday . Does anyone have additional info or are aware of " fibrin sealant " ? Is there any top level spinal centers someone can reccomend in the upper Maryland area ?
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