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Don’t Take Your Spine for Granted

Featured Photo from Don’t Take Your Spine for Granted

A wide range of care options provides relief for neck and back pain.

Many of us take our spines for granted until they become stiff or painful, hindering our daily activities. In fact, about four in five people will experience neck or back pain at some point in their lives. The good news is: There are many options for relief, and surgical advancements are making it safer and simpler to restore spinal function in the most serious cases.  

Here’s what you need to know:

Spinal Pain Is Incredibly Common
Back and neck pain are among the top three reasons for emergency visits, right after headaches and the flu. This condition doesn’t just afflict older people – younger adults are also at risk, especially those with jobs that put a lot of wear and tear on their backs.

A lot can go wrong with the spine, from problems that develop in aging vertebrae, to injuries and inherited conditions. Some of the most common issues we see are herniated discs, compression fractures, and spinal stenosis, or pinching of the spinal cord and nerve roots.

Just as pain can radiate from the spine into the arms and legs, it also has a ripple effect on your quality of life, family relationships, and productivity at work. With that in mind, we strive to diagnose and treat patients as efficiently as possible. As we often tell patients, there’s no reason to suffer through chronic pain.

Patients Have Many Options
Not everyone needs surgery, so it’s important to take a comprehensive view of each spine to create an individualized treatment plan. For example, weak muscles can cause or worsen back pain, and we need to rehabilitate those muscles to see long-term results.

Often, patients can get relief through methods such as physical therapy, pool therapy, chiropractic manipulation, acupuncture, and massage. By using a trusted network of providers specializing in these options, patients often see improvement in six to eight weeks.

Recovery from Surgery Is Getting Easier
With that said, sometimes your doctor must resort to surgery. Fortunately, advancements in surgical techniques, such as minimally invasive surgery, leads to smaller incisions, less pain, reduced  blood loss, lower risk of infection, and minimal downtime. 

Robotic technology brings even further benefits to develop a comprehensive surgical plan and provide a visual outline of the procedure before and during surgery. This helps ensure accuracy and limits the amount of radiation to the patient as well as the surgical team. 

The goal is to offer the technology and expertise to allow you to return to your routines as quickly and smoothly as possible. By taking advantage of a range of treatment options, you can restore a strong, healthy spine and get back to the life you enjoy.

Dr. Pedro M. Ramirez is a board-eligible neurosurgeon at the Spine Care Center at Oviedo Medical Center. He can be contacted at 407-890-2273. Visit to learn more.

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