Spine Surgery

Neck pains and occipital headaches – a rare pathology

A 69 year old male presented to his GP with a slowly progressive, 6 month history of left sided neck pains and occipital headaches. Examination was unremarkable and in particular, strengths and reflexes in all 4 limbs were normal. CT scan revealed some degenerative changes low down in the cervical facet joints and a referral was made to an orthopaedic spinal specialist, and from here facet joint injections were undertaken. […]

Treatment of Spinal Metastases

Significant advances have been made in the  treatment of spinal metastases in recent years. Options have evolved from simple decompression surgery or conventional external bean radiotherapy (cEBRT) to complex multi-disciplinary treatments incorporating stereotactic radio surgery (SRS) and minimally invasive surgical techniques (MIS). This is important as 60% of all patients with cancer will develop spinal metastases and 5-10% will develop spinal cord compression. The aims of therapy for these patients […]

Spinal Case – Keyhole lumbar laminectomy

Patients with spinal stenosis usually present with symptoms of neurogenic cluadication, with bilateral leg pain with walking and standing. A CT or MRI will often make the diagnosis. Surgery is the appropriate treatment and the traditional operation is a decompressive lumbar laminectomy at the affected levels. The commonest level to be affected is at L4/5, and a normal surgical approach would usually require a midline incision of 10-15 centimetres. Patients would […]

Falls off ladders – just don’t do it

Falls off ladders are a surprisingly common injury in our community, and whilst most amount to nothing more than dented pride when they occur, some are considerably more serious – just ask Mr Ian (Molly) Meldrum. Recently we had cause to treat yet another considerably more serious “ladder injury”.  A 56 year old man had been painting his ceilings at home when he fell off his ladder.  Whilst this may […]

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