Spine

Introduction

The spine plays a vital role in protecting the spinal cord, which connects the brain to the rest of the body. It also provides the foundation for the posture of the body as well as enabling you to move about. The spine is made up from a column of bones; a total of 24 separate vertebrae, each interspaced with cartilage. The presence of pain in the back can have a significant impact on your daily life. 

Back pain is a very common complaint and it can be felt anywhere along the spine, from the neck to the hips. Pain in the lower part of the back (also known as lumbago) is particularly common in the adult population.  

Back pain can go away naturally within a few weeks or months. However, sometimes the pain does not improve or it can worsen over time. When this occurs, you should seek medical advice. 

At Healthshare, we are proud to facilitate hundreds of specialists who can help improve your mobility and reduce your back pain through a variety of treatment options. This might be through surgery or more non-invasive methods, such as physiotherapy or pain management. 

Whether you have back pain caused by arthritis or poor posture, such as a slipped disc, our team will strive to ensure you experience increased mobility and pain relief through effective treatment. 

Ready to book now? Get in touch to discuss your needs and decide on the best course of treatment for you.

Ready to book now? Get in touch to discuss your needs and decide on the best course of treatment for you.

What is spinal surgery?

Spinal surgery is carried out by specialist orthopaedic surgeons with the goal of improving pain and symptoms you may experience as a result of spine conditions. Many people with spine problems can be treated non-surgically. Physical therapy, home exercises, medication and often times spinal injections are often recommended before surgery is considered. If the problem still isn’t resolved, then surgery becomes a good option. 

Common spinal conditions

Back pain comes in many forms. It can be felt as a sharp pain when bending down or it might be a dull ache that spreads out from the lower back and radiates down the legs. There are several reasons why you may wish to seek the advice of a doctor. 

Sciatica

Sciatica commonly felt as a pain in the lower back and down a leg. It is caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve where it leaves the base of your spine. Sciatica can also occur when a disc in your spine becomes worn and develops a bulge (this is called a slipped disc). 

Spinal stenosis

Spinal stenosis occurs where the space in the centre of the spine (spinal canal) becomes narrow. The nerves can become trapped, which can cause weakness or pain in your legs. 

Cervical disc issues

Your cervical spine is made up of seven bones, each called a vertebra. These connect to the skull above and to the thoracic spine below. The thoracic spine is behind the chest and anchors the ribs.  

The upper two vertebrae are made differently from the rest. They allow us to turn our head from side to side. The rest of the cervical spine lets us nod and tilt our head and neck. Inside the cervical spine is a channel which protects the spinal cord, called the spinal canal.  

There is an opening on each side of the spine at each spinal level. A spinal nerve runs through each of these openings and carries nerve impulses to move muscles or carries information to the brain from the sense organs in the skin, muscles, ligaments, and internal organs.   

An intervertebral disc sits between every two vertebrae, and cushions the spine. The discs are pads of connective tissue and cartilage. They act like shock absorbers between the vertebrae.  

Sometimes, pieces of the disc can push backward into the spinal canal and press on the nerves or spinal cord. Inflammation from the disc can sometimes irritate the nerves or spinal cord.  

Other times calcium deposits can build up on the back of the vertebra and push on the nerves or spinal cord. One of these calcium deposits is called a spur, also known as an osteophyte, which means a bony projection. 

The simplest type of herniated disc is one which is herniated only on one side and is causing pain on that side. 

Common spinal treatments

We offer a range of spinal treatment options for people living with back pain, numbness, referred pain and other symptoms of nerve compression including:  

Spinal fusion surgery

Spinal fusion surgery treats severe pain in your lumbar (lower) spine. During this surgery, your consultant will fuse together two or more of your vertebrae (the bones that form your spinal cord) using a bone graft. 

Spinal injection for pain

Under local anaesthetic, your consultant or a radiologist will inject a steroid medicine into your back, often using an epidural. These steroid injections help treat inflammation around your spinal cord, reducing pain and stiffness in your back as a result. 

Cervical disc surgery

If you have a herniated cervical disc causing neck and arm pain, and if you have not improved from a good programme of conservative care, then you might consider having surgery.  

The surgery can be done through the back of your neck (a posterior approach) or through the front (an anterior approach). The anterior approach is usually recommended as it’s a more comfortable procedure. 

Lumbar spinal decompression surgery

Lumbar spinal decompression is often performed to treat compressed nerves caused by spinal stenosis, which can affect the way you walk. This surgery is usually recommended when non-surgical methods are no longer effective.  

During this procedure, the muscles in your back will be raised to expose your spine. Your surgeon will then remove any tissue (bone or ligaments) at the back of your spine that could be compressing your nerves. 

Available procedures

No procedures available

Looking to fast track your treatment?

Our consultants

Mr Gordan Grahovac
Mr Gordan Grahovac
Consultant Neurosurgeon
MD, PhD

Ways to pay

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