spine-e1669754764469.jpg

Garden State Medical Center offers many different spinal stabilization procedures to help with back, leg, and neck pain. Some of these procedures include Interlaminar Lumbar Instrumented Fusions, Stabilink, and Nuvasive Affix III. 

What is an Interlaminar Lumbar Instrumented Fusison?

The Nuvasive Affix III procedure is a spinal stabilization device that is implanted through a small incision during a minimally invasive procedure. It is a non-sterile device intended to be implanted between two adjacent lumbar spinous processes to decompress neural structures, typically to treat a patient with degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis. It is typically designed as a small spacer, either a single-piece or assembly, made of metal.

Is the procedure right for me?

While it is up to your doctor to determine the best approach for treating your pain, there are some common conditions that this procedure is ideal for. If you suffer from pain in your legs, buttocks or groin area due to degenerative disc disease, you may be a good candidate for the procedure. If you have back instability you are also a good candidate.

What are the potential benefits of the procedure?

Some benefits include small incision size and limited muscle disruption, minimized recovery/ O.R. time and blood loss, comparable results to other longer procedures, and significant improvement in pain and function.

What is the Stabilink procedure?

The Stabilink procedure is an inter-spinous stabilization implant that is placed on the spinal cord to help with degenerative disc disease and spinal stenosis. The principal benefit of the procedure is that it is placed between the spinous processes, away from the neural elements including the spinal cord and spinal nerves. The implant is placed through a 2-4 cm incision and the procedure is relatively quick. The device limits overall motion when bending or rotating the spine.

Is the procedure right for me?

While it is up to your doctor to determine the best approach for treating your pain, there are some common conditions that this procedure is ideal for. If you suffer from back pain due to degenerative disc disease or spinal stenosis, you may be a good candidate for the procedure. The implant is meant to stabilize the spinal column and therefore the device can be good for people who move a lot throughout the day..

What are the potential benefits of the procedure?

Some benefits include interlocking implant insertion/compression, short overall procedure time, no bulky elements, smaller incisions, and significant improvement in pain and function.

What is the Nuvasive Affix III procedure?

The Nuvasive Affix III procedure is a spinal stabilization device that is implanted through a small incision during a minimally invasive procedure. It is a non-sterile device intended to be implanted between two adjacent lumbar spinous processes to decompress neural structures, typically to treat a patient with degenerative lumbar spinal stenosis. It is typically designed as a small spacer, either a single-piece or assembly, made of metal.

Is the procedure right for me?

While it is up to your doctor to determine the best approach for treating your pain, there are some common conditions that this procedure is ideal for. If you suffer from back pain due to degenerative disc disease or spinal stenosis, you may be a good candidate for the procedure. The implant is meant to stabilize the spinal column and therefore the device can be good for people who move a lot throughout the day..

What are the potential benefits of the procedure?

Benefits of the procedure include short overall procedure time, no bulky elements, smaller incisions, significant improvement in pain and function, and long-lasting pain relief.

To talk to one of our pain management specialists about these procedures, call us today!

732.202.3000


neck-pain-1200x675.jpg

Cervical Interlaminar Epidural Steroid Injections

A cervical interlaminar epidural steroid injection is an outpatient procedure for treating neck, upper back, shoulder, and arm pain. This information sheet will explain what it is. Your doctor can explain if it is for you.

What is the epidural space?

The dura is a protective covering of the spinal cord and its nerves. The space surrounding the dura is called the epidural space. In the neck, it is called the cervical epidural space.

What causes pain in the epidural space?

The cervical area of the spine has seven bones, called vertebrae. Soft discs found between these vertebrae cushion them, hold them together, and control motion. If a disc tears, chemicals inside may leak out. This can inflame nerve roots or the dura, and cause pain. A large disc tear may cause a disc to bulge, inflaming nerve roots or the dura, and cause pain. Bone spurs, called osteophytes, can also press against nerve roots and cause pain.

How do I know if I have disc and nerve root pain?

If you have pain in your neck or upper back when you move your head or neck, you may have cervical disc or dural inflammation. if pain travels to your arm when you move your head or neck, you may have nerve root inflammation. Common tests such as MRIs can show disc bulges and nerve root compression, but may not show a torn and leaking disc. A cervical epidural injection may provide relief if disc problems, or dural, or nerve root inflammation are causing your pain.

What is a cervical interlaminar epidural steroid injection?

In a cervical epidural steroid injection, a corticosteroid (anti-inflammatory medicine) is injected into the epidural space to reduce inflammation. A local anesthetic (numbing medicine) may also be injected. The simplest way is from the back of the spine. This is called an interlaminar injection.

What happens during/after an injection?

A local anesthetic will be used to numb your skin. The doctor will then insert a thin needle directly into the facet joint. Fluoroscopy, a type of x-ray, must be used to ensure the safe and proper position of the needle. A dye may also be used to make sure the needle is in the correct spot. Once the doctor is sure the needle is correctly placed, the medicine is injected. You will be monitored for up to 30 minutes after the injection. When you are ready to leave, the staff will give you discharge instructions. You will also be given a pain diary. It is important to fill this out because it helps your doctor know how the injection is working. It may help to move your back in ways that hurt before the injection, to see if the pain is still there, but do not overdo it. Take it easy for the rest of the day. You may feel immediate pain relief and numbness in your back for a period of time after the injection. This tells you the medication has reached the right spot. Your pain may return after this short pain-free period or may even be a little worse for a day or two. It may be caused by needle irritation or by the corticosteroid itself. Corticosteroids usually take two or three days to start working but can take as long as a week. You can usually return to work the day after the injection, but always check with your doctor.

 

How long can I expect pain relief?

The extent and duration of pain relief may depend on the amount of inflammation and how many areas are involved. Other coexisting factors may be responsible for your pain. Sometimes an injection can bring several weeks to months of pain relief, and then more treatment is needed. Other times, particularly if there is no underlying bone or joint problem, one injection brings long-term pain relief. If your pain is caused by injury to more than one area, only some of your symptoms may be helped by one injection. This pamphlet is for general education only. Specific questions or concerns should always be directed to your doctor. Your doctor can explain possible risks or side effects

To schedule an appointment with one of our pain management specialists, call us today!

732.202.3000


OASTAUG-Common-Causes-of-Foot-and-Ankle-Pain-JAN-18-2-1.jpg

Our feet and ankles are under immense amounts of pressure every single day. Foot and Ankle injuries are some of the most common injuries and it is important to know how to recover from them. These 5 exercises can help you move in the right direction:

Heel Raises

To do a heel raise, stand on a solid surface, or an elevation for increased range of motion. It is a good idea to hold onto something for balance. Next, raise your heels by using your calves. Finally, lower yourself with control, and repeat for 20 reps.

Towel Stretch

To do the towel stretch, sit on the floor with your legs extended straight out in front of you. Next, wrap a towel around your toes on both feet. Slowly pull back on the towel until you start to feel a stretch at the very bottom of your feet and the back of your lower legs. Repeat this for at least 20 reps.

Step Ups

To do step ups, find an elevated surface that can safely hold your weight. One leg at a time, step up onto the service and then step back down off of the surface. Repeat this for at least 20 reps. Make sure when you are doing step ups to alternate the leg you start with so that you don’t create a strength imbalance.

Foot Rollout

To do feet rollouts, get a ball or a roller and set it up on the ground in front of you. Use the arches of your feet to roll the ball back and forth. Roll on the ball for about 30 seconds before switching to your other leg. Repeat this several times for each foot.

Balance & Reach

To do the balance and reach exercise, first start to take the pressure off of one of your feet. Then, take this same leg and bring it off the ground and towards your back. At the same time, reach your arms out in front of your body. While you are doing this exercise, alternate the leg that you are putting up. Repeat this exercise for at least 20 reps.

To schedule an appointment to see one of our pain management specialists, call us today!

732.202.3000


vert-3-1.jpg

Our Vertiflex procedure can help give you your life back!

Do you have spinal stenosis?

Spinal stenosis may be the cause of your back pain. Spinal Stenosis is a condition where your spinal column narrows and compresses the spinal cord. This can cause immense amounts of pain for anyone. Spinal stenosis is commonly caused by an excess growth of bone around the spinal nerves. This excess bone growth often results from osteoarthritis. Stenosis can also result from a dislocation or a fracture of the vertebral bone. Stenosis can be caused by soft tissue intruding into the spine’s open spaces. Herniated discs, tumors, and thickened spinal ligaments can press against the spinal nerves. In some cases, a person is born with a small spinal canal that does not provide enough room for the spinal nerves.

 

What does Vertiflex do?

The Vertiflex device is a small implant that is inserted into the spine. Its main purpose is to fight against the narrowing of the spinal column caused by spinal stenosis. It will relieve a lot of the pressure on your lower back and improve your overall pain levels. It works against the forces of spinal stenosis.

Should I consider Vertiflex?

Most patients that consider Vertiflex are not good candidates for spine surgery. This procedure is meant to relieve most conditions related to the spacing of the spinal column. If you are unsure if this would work for you, see our specialists today.

Vertiflex Benefits

Small Size 

The Vertiflex is no bigger than a quarter and is able to provide relief.

No Hospital Stay

Our patients are out on the same day because this is a minimally invasive procedure.

Improved Pain/Function

Pain relief comes quickly after the implant is finished. Patients will see an overall decrease in pain levels and improved function.


featuredimagesize-copy.png

Worrying about bladder mishaps in your daily life can certainly keep you from doing the things you love most. Luckily, a bladder stimulator is a great option for those suffering from a number of different bladder conditions. Continue reading to learn more about bladder stimulators which may be right for you.

Symptoms of Bladder Control Problems

Common symptoms of bladder control problems may include:

  • Frequent urge to urinate
  • Inability to hold urine/leaking 
  • Inability to urinate 
  • Incomplete bladder emptying

Bladder Conditions 

While symptoms may vary there are four common types of bladder conditions:

Overactive Bladder (OAB): OAB is an umbrella term that includes the frequent and urgent need to empty your bladder. 

Urinary Incontinence: The inability to control when the bladder releases urine.

Urinary Retention: The inability to empty the bladder. People with this condition are unable to urinate or they feel frequent urges but only urinate small amounts.

Fecal Incontinence: Also known as accidental bowel leakage, is a condition where people get sudden urges to pass stool and experience leakage of stool before they make it to the restroom.

The Solution: A Bladder Stimulator

A bladder stimulator is a small device implanted in your back at the base of your spine and above the buttocks during a procedure known as sacral nerve stimulation (SNS). The sacral nerves carry the signals between your bladder, spinal cord, and brain that tell you when you need to urinate. This is done after exhausting conventional treatment options such as pelvic floor physical therapy and medications. 

At GSMC, we use a long-term relief technology called Axonics Therapy. Before committing to long-term therapy, our team first does a trial with the patient to see if the treatment works for each and every patient. A thin thin wire is carefully placed close to the third sacral nerve through a needle. The wire connects to a battery-powered device (similar to a pacemaker) called a pulse generator that you wear outside your body during a three day trial period. If the symptoms get significantly better the device is put in permanently and can last up to 15 years. 

The actual electrical stimulation that is used to treat urinary incontinence sends a mild electric current to nerves in the lower back/pelvic muscles which are involved in urination. The patient does not feel this electrical stimulation but the nerves do leading to symptoms improvement. 

Think you may be a candidate for a bladder stimulator? Call to set up your consultation and begin the recovery process today: 732-202-3000


featuredimagesize.png

It’s no question that a fracture or break in one of your spine’s vertebrae can be painful and impact your daily life tremendously when unable to move freely. Luckily, kyphoplasty is a procedure designed to stop the pain, stabilize the bone, and restore lost vertebral height caused by the injury. Continue reading to learn about what the procedure entails, who would be a candidate, and the recovery process. 

Candidates for Kyphoplasty

Kyphoplasty is used to treat spinal compression fractures, which occur in the spinal vertebrae when weakened by osteoporosis or due to trauma such as falling or a  car accident. Compression fractures typically occur in the thoracic region of the spine, which includes the T1 through T12 vertebrae, but may also occur in the lumbar spine, or L1 through L5.

The GSMC team recommends performing a kyphoplasty within 8 weeks of the fracture taking place for the best results when it comes to restoring the spine’s original height.

Performing Kyphoplasty

Patients are given moderate sedation (similar to a colonoscopy) during the 20-minute procedure. After instilling local anesthesia, a small stab incision is made in the patient’s back through which a narrow tube is carefully placed into the broken vertebral body using x-ray guidance. Once properly placed, a cavity is created to allow proper placement of a cement-like material called polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) as well as to restore the natural height and shape of the vertebral body. This medical cement hardens very quickly to internally cast and stabilize the bone within minutes.

Kyphoplasty Recovery

Kyphoplasty is an outpatient procedure and when completed, the patient is monitored in the post-anesthesia care unit for approximately 20-30 minutes. Once a patient is awake enough to get dressed, eat, and drink they are discharged home. Many patients start to feel improvement as they are leaving the recovery room; the overwhelming majority of patients will feel significant relief within 24 hours of the procedure. 

While normal activities, with exception to driving, can be resumed immediately, our team recommends avoiding strenuous activities for at least 6 weeks. 

Risks and Complications of Kyphoplasty

As with any medical procedure, there are always risks and complications to consider. For the most part, complications are rare due to our highly skilled and experienced doctors who perform this procedure on a weekly basis.

Specifically for kyphoplasty, complications may include:

  • Nerve damage or a spinal cord injury from malpositioned instruments placed in the back
  • Nerve injury or spinal cord compression from leaking of the PMMA 
  • Allergic reaction to polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA)

Think you may be a candidate for kyphoplasty? for Call to set up your consultation and begin the recovery process today: 1-888-376-2661


featuredimagesize-1.png

June 9, 2021 Pain Management0

From headaches to foot pain, it’s only human to experience pain from time to time. However, chronic pain is defined as pain that lasts 3-6 months or longer in some cases. Pain experienced on a day to day basis is often deep-rooted in more serious conditions which require medical attention and the earlier they’re treated, the better. Check out six common signs that it’s time to ditch the over-the-counter medication and finally see a pain management doctor. 

Signs It’s Time to See a Pain Management Doctor

  1. You’re struggling to perform everyday tasks

Your day to day can be stressful enough, so pain brought on by doing simple tasks such as reaching in a high cabinet or opening a door shouldn’t add to it. While it’s not uncommon for an injury or pain to flare up and cause these struggles, if they’re lasting for an extended period of time it is certainly something to take note of.

  1. You’re experiencing radiating pain

Once the pain you’re experiencing begins to radiate throughout a limb or part of your body, it’s definitely a sign to see a pain management specialist. In addition to the radiating pain feeling, look out for numbness, tingling, and other similar sensations. These feelings are often associated with pinched nerves, the slipping of discs, and other serious conditions that need medical attention.

  1. You’re having trouble sleeping due to the pain

If your pain is keeping you up through the night, it’s definitely time to see a pain management doctor. Your body needs that time to rest, and if pain is getting in the way, it will begin to affect even more aspects of your health. 

  1. Over-the-counter medication isn’t working

While pain relievers are okay in small quantities, they won’t solve the cause of your pain and therefore you’re only delaying your recovery process. Also, even over the counter medications can cause serious health conditions if taken for prolonged periods. Our team’s procedures and expertise work to reduce patients’ need for painkillers to allow them to live pain-free faster.

  1. The pain persists with a specific motion

Whether it’s bending over or walking up the stairs, our board-certified pain management doctors will perform a full-body examination in order to pinpoint the root of your pain. From there, we’ll be able to utilize interventional pain management techniques to provide well-deserved relief.

  1. You’re no longer able to perform hobbies and activities you love

We all have hobbies and activities that make us who we are. Whether it is golf or gardening, these activities have both mental and physical benefits. When we stop activities we love, we lose a lot more than a pastime. Activity avoidance can lead to changes in your mood making the toll of chronic pain substantially worse. If you are struggling to get back in the game, our pain experts can help diagnose the problem and get you moving again!

Stop Living with Pain

Ready to get back to a pain-free life? From the ability to sleep through the night to getting back to exercising, no matter what your health goals are, Garden State Medical Center’s pain management doctors are here to help you reach them. 

Call to set up your consultation and begin the recovery process today: 1-888-376-2661



Join Our Mailing List