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Spine Surgery Choices

Posted Jul 01 2009 6:46pm

Almost every day we receive enquiries from people asking for help and advice with their medical conditions. When one comes in we pass it on to the relevant specialist; sometimes they can help, sometimes they can’t. This particular request  on spine surgery came in via the inCapitalHealth website last Saturday – the author gave us permission to use it but I’ve removed all the personal details.

I have been trying to decide on which operation to have  – one consultant recommended something called the solis cage another told me about a procedure which has artificial bone in the centre and requires a plate,

I am at my wits end trying to figure out what type of operation is best. What I do know is that I need an operation more than ever at the moment as I have been experiencing difficulty with my bladder and bowel movements in the last few days. I would like a minimally invasive operation with as little down time as possible, I am a singer and am worried about my vocal chords and look of my throat.

Khai Lam, Orthopaedic Surgeon

Please could you help?

We forwarded this request to spine expert Khai Lam along with the radiology report we’d been sent. Khai replied – on Sunday!- with his detailed analysis of the report which concluded:

I WOULD DEFINITELY RECOMMEND 2 LEVEL DISC REPLACEMENT AND ONLY A FUSION IS THE LEVELS ARE VERY STIFF..!  DISC REPLACEMENTS OFFER A MUCH QUICKER RECOVERY AND IN ANY CASE THE SURGERY IS MINIMALLY DESTRUCTIVE AND ONLY 2 DAYS IN HOSPITAL, WITH MAXIMUM 4 WEEKS AWAY FROM WORK/SINGING. WITH CAREFUL SURGERY THE RISKS OF VOCAL CORD INJURY IS LESS THAN 1%.

He suggested the patient arrange to attend his  London Bridge Hospital clinic or  request a GP referral to him at Guy’s Hospital in London.

A little later the patient replied to us.

Firstly thank you for your prompt attention I was completely amazed by your immediate response, I dont think I was expecting anything much to happen when I emailed your website, but to receive (a) your email informing me that you were attending to my questions and (b) a reply from a spine consultant at Guys Hospital answering my questions, and better yet the consultant suggesting an operation that would help me and is prepared to see me to take the matter further is not just amazing, its fantastic, but all this happened over the last weekend and within 48 hours is almost impossible to believe, but its true, I have no words adequate to describe how grateful I am, and so of course you may use the details contained in my MRI report on your site to assist anyone in a similar position.

You asked if I would let you know if I would like to see Mr Kahi Lam my answer is an emphatic yes as soon as possible at either the London Bridge Hospital or Guy’s which ever is more expedient.

Thank You, even though I have seen 2 other consultants I had been left feeling extemely afraid and nervous not really knowing what to think or how to make a choice between the operations offered to me, however, what Mr Lam is suggesting sounds so much less traumatic and disabling, I am now filled with anticipation and hope for the outcome of my needed operation.

Many many thanks.

All in one weekend. It’s nice when you’re able to help.

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Tags: disc replacement, Khai Lam, london bridge hospital, spine surgery

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