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In the Now
Shawna Jones

Spinal Fusion...would you do it?

Posted Tuesday, November 3, 2015, at 9:50 AM
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  • Shawna, I am no where near the type of pain you have described but I know the frustration of constant pain and probably would be very tempted to do something, if we knew what to do.

    Are you able to identify why you have moments of relief?

    -- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Nov 3, 2015, at 10:15 AM
  • I looked at your title again and realized that I may have more in common than I thought. I had 3 or 4 (I've actually forgotten) neck vertebrae fused with cadaver bone and plates.

    It did not solve what I went in there for but from the x-rays, it may have been needed to head off paralysis. I can remember taking a big hit in football and one while surfing. Not sure which or if both contributed.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Nov 3, 2015, at 12:20 PM
  • Steve,

    I think the moments of relief that I now experience following surgery are in part due to continued treatment, as well as the procedure itself...steroid injections (I just had another last week), light stretch exercises and pain relievers. Additionally, I am careful to monitor myself now, such as avoiding situations that require heavy lifting, bending, carrying, etc.

    I hope that surgery provided you some measure of relief from your neck pain. I wrote this article as a reference for those who are in similar situations and are unsure about their choices... as an insight into what to expect if choosing surgery. As you yourself can attest, it is not a magic fix and most likely will not take away all of the pain being experienced, but in my case it did offer some relief...about 50% improvement over what I was experiencing prior to surgery. And as horrific as the surgical experience and recovery was, it is worth the benefit of decreased pain, no matter how small.

    -- Posted by So_Sue_Me on Tue, Nov 3, 2015, at 11:23 PM
  • Due diligence as with anything. Doctors are human (right now) so second opinions and don't be timid about asking what you do understand.

    In my case I could see that I was one bump away from major issues. In fact, the doctor questioned his nurse where I was when he looked in the waiting room and saw no one in a wheel chair.

    But as I mentioned, it did not resolve what I actually went in for, so.... was mine successful? I guess in a preventative sort of way.

    Hope things continue to improve.

    50% improvement certainly sounds better than what you described.

    -- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Nov 4, 2015, at 7:45 AM
  • SHAWNA, WORKING FOR A LOCAL NEUROSURGEON MYSELF. I SEE PATIENTS COME AND GO WITH VARIOUS TROUBLES. SPINAL FUSION IF NEEDED IS A GOOD OPTION, BUT YOU NEED THE RIGHT DR. FOR THE JOB. DR. EMADIAN IN TULLAHOMA IS THE BEST NEUROSURGEON AROUND. I WOULD TRUST HIM TO WORK ON ANYONE I KNOW, FAMILY, FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES.

    I DEAL WITH HIS PATIENTS BEFORE AND AFTER SURGERY. SOME PATIENTS HAVE HAD SURGERIES AT OTHER NEUROSURGEONS, AND THEY ALL WISH THEY HAD COME TO HIM IN THE FIRST PLACE.

    WHEN TRYING TO DECIDE IF YOU SHOULD HAVE SPINAL SURGERY PERIOD YOU SHOULD GET SEVERAL OPINIONS AND THEN COME TO DR. EMADIAN AT PREMIER NEUROSURGERY AND SPINE CENTER IN TULLAHOMA AND GET THE RIGHT DR FOR ALL YOUR SPINAL TROUBLES.

    -- Posted by PNSCGIRL on Tue, Dec 1, 2015, at 2:53 PM
  • Dr. Arthur J. Ulm III from the Nashville Neurosurgery Group was the neurosurgeon who performed my surgery. He has an excellent reputation, having received the Patients' Choice Award (2011 - 2014), Compassionate Doctor Recognition (2011 - 2014), Top 10 Doctor - State of Tennessee (2014), Top 10 Doctor - Metro Area, Greater Nashville (2014), Top 10 Doctor - City of Nashville (2014), On-Time Doctor Award (2014).

    He's also an Assistant Professor of Clinical Neurosurgery and has a joint appointment within the Cell Biology and Anatomy Department at LSU Health Sciences Center and has several publications in the field of neurosurgery. But I think perhaps the best compliment I can pay him is one that my teenage daughter referenced when I was reviewing neurosurgeons...."mom, he's only in his early 40's so he's still got young, steady hands...not old, shaky hands like the other guy." As silly as it sounds, it kind of made sense to me to go with the guy who has the steadiest hand when having the nerve endings of your spine worked on, LOL.

    -- Posted by shawna.jones on Mon, Dec 7, 2015, at 12:04 PM
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