We created the Spine Health Center with three goals in mind- Relieve your pain, restore your independence and get you back to work and daily activities as quickly as possible.
We’re focused on your entire journey, not just your surgery. Led by your spine program navigator, our care team of physicians, nurses, physical and occupational therapists are there for you every step of the way from consultation to rehabilitation.
Here’s a few highlights:
We’re focused on you. Patients play a key role in their recovery and you’ll be involved every step of the way.
We have an entire specially trained care team dedicated to getting you back to life as quickly as possible. Your Spine Health Center team consists of
Spine Program Navigator – The spine program navigator is responsible for guiding you through the spine program. The Spine program coordinator will:
Surgeon – The physician who performs the procedure.
Registered Nurse (RN) – Much of your care will be provided by a registered nurse. Your nurse ensures orders given by your physician are completed including medications and monitoring your vital signs.
Physical Therapist (PT) – The physical therapist will work on your mobility skills, educate you on precautions and teach exercises designed to improve strength and range of motion.
Occupational Therapist (OT) – The occupational therapist will guide you in performing daily tasks such as dressing and bathing. They may demonstrate special equipment that may be used in home after your surgery such as shower/tub benches, grab bars and raised toilet seats.
RN Care Manager – They will meet with you during your hospital stay to discuss your discharge plan. The RN care manager assists you with your post-hospital care, equipment needs and acts as a liaison with your insurance company.
Other Physicians (if applicable) – Other physicians may work in conjunction with your surgeon to manage any medical issues that may arise during your hospital stay. These physicians may include internists, pain management specialists, anesthesiologists and physical medicine and rehabilitation specialists.
Your Coach - Your coach is a family member or friend who will be with you to help you before, during and after your hospital stay. Your coach should be physically capable, available and actively involved in all steps of your spine surgery journey.
The spine is made up of 33 vertebrae bones that protect the spinal cord. The bones are divided into five segments: seven cervical, twelve thoracic, five lumbar, the sacrum (five bones fused together) and the coccyx (four bones fused together). Together they provide structure to support your body. The vertebrae are linked by facet joints to allow movement and separated by the intervertebral discs which act as shock absorbers.
As people age, the discs between the vertebrae lose water, resulting in decreased space and height. This can reduce the space through which nerves exit. Discs and vertebral bones can also be damaged through trauma or arthritis causing misalignment and pain.
Discectomy - Discectomy is the removal of part of a ruptured disc. The surgeon removes the part of the disc that is pressing, pinching, or irritating the nerve root.
Laminectomy - Similar to laminotomy, laminectomy is surgery to take out the bony arches (lamina) of one or more of the vertebrae in your spine. This surgery can help to relieve pressure on your spinal cord or nerves. Laminotomy is the partial removal of the lamina.
Lumbar Fusion - Two or more vertebrae are joined together using bone grafts or implants, screws and rods to stabilize your back and help reduce pain. Posterior fusion is when the surgeon will perform the surgery through the back. The surgeon may decide to go through the abdominal area in addition to performing a posterior fusion. This is referred to as anterior lumbar fusion. The surgeon may also decide to do both an anterior and posterior fusion if needed.
Cervical Discectomy and Fusion - Surgical procedure performed on the cervical (neck) region of the spine to help relieve pressure on nerves and spinal cord.
Spine Surgery Patient Guide
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A lumbar fusion is an operation to stabilize the lower back by creating bony bridges between at least two vertebrae and eliminating motion between them. This can be accomplished by fusing the vertebral bodies in front (anterior fusion) or by fusing the facet joints and lamina in the back (posterior fusion).
Epidural steroid injections (ESI) involve an injection of steroid and anesthetic directly into the area of inflamed nerves in the back. This inflammation is usually the result of nerve compression caused by a narrowed spinal canal (spinal stenosis) or a herniated disc.
Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive surgical procedure for people suffering with compression fractures of the spine. The procedure involves the insertion of a balloon into the collapsed vertebra, followed by injection of a special material.
Located throughout Orange County and Los Angeles County, MemorialCare-affiliated physicians are locally and nationally recognized in their area of expertise. We've made it easy to find a quality healthcare provider right in your own backyard.
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