ADRSupport Community

ADRSupport Community (
-   International Assistance (
-   -   Why go over seas for a back operation? (

Stonewall_Boris 01-26-2014 03:15 AM

Why go over seas for a back operation?

I just thought to put out this question and see what the replies would be.
If you went over seas for a back or neck operation why did you do it? If you are considering going over seas for a back or neck operation why are you thinking about it?

marlin5353 01-26-2014 09:24 AM

Germany Fusion
Hi All,

This is the dilemma many of us are dealing with. I goto Germany often for pleasure and business and recently had the opportunity to talk to a surgeon about my spine. He mentioned the only part that concerned him at the moment was my neck and that he would recommend a fusion. I asked him about ADR and he mentioned that if I were his son that he would push me to fusion as he was not sold on the viability of ADR. This surgeon is a friend of a family member and would not charge me for his time, only the hospital would cost me. This eliminates the thought that he only wants me to do fusion because he is not skilled at ADR, there was no money in it for him anyway. Proves that not everyone gets fusions in Germany and I believe that fusion is still widely popular there. This surgeon has done work on members of the German National Soccer team as well.
Without FDA Doctors have much more flexibility on what they use. They cannot easily get sued. Having said that when my time will come for surgery I still favour the concept of ADR and if that is what I want and believe that the M6 is the best device for me than I have no problem going to Germany for this surgery. I follow many of your stories here and appreciate all of you for doing great follow ups for the rest of us to make the best possible decision.

Good healing for all of us.


Mark in Ontario, Canada

Surprised 1 01-26-2014 10:11 AM


Originally Posted by Stonewall_Boris (Post 104016)

I just thought to put out this question and see what the replies would be.
If you went over seas for a back or neck operation why did you do it? If you are considering going over seas for a back or neck operation why are you thinking about it?

Somewhere along the decision making path I read "they don't fuse hips or knees why fuse the spine?" Makes sense to me.

bwink23 01-26-2014 01:05 PM

To me any chance of retaining the natural motion of my spine has to be better than fusing it. Yes, there are some bad ADR stories out there, but no more than you'll find for fusion. It makes sense to keep the motion your body was intended to have. When a segment is fused, somewhere your body is gonna make up for that deficit, which is always a negative impact. At least with ADR, there is a chance of revising it if things go wrong. With fusion, there is no turning back at all, with no alternatives. Plus, i'm not fond of the extreme potential of other discs decaying, which would lead to even more fusions, even less flexibility, and more disability.

The 3D-printing thing looks really cool, but we don't have time for that, who knows in 20-30 years?? Even if you get an ADR and for some reason it gives you fits in 15-20 years and the only alternative is fusion...that's 15-20 years of your life you didn't inadvertently destroy your remaining discs, not due to aging. Who knows, in 15-20 years, they may be able to revise these discs by "rebuilding" them while leaving plates intact. Hopefully modern medicine will continue to advance at a good pace. I personally would hope my future ADR's will last my lifetime.

WHY do i want surgery?? I have a small spondy with pars defect fracture, along with DDD disease at another level that keeps me from working and doing what i want to do. I've hobbled along for 3-4 years now as it's gotten progressively more difficult to deal with. I'm at a point where i'm not gonna get better and only getting worse. I feel if i try to wait longer, i could cause further damage to surrounding areas of my spine, maybe even other discs. The sciatic pain flares and hip, leg pain can make it difficult for me to walk sometimes. I've had both my hips scoped(arthritis, torn cartilage and impingements) in hopes i wouldn't have to touch my spine. Unfortunately it did not work out for me. My back has clinical defects present that have been shown to give my type of symptoms. I don't know what or where else i can get treated that will take of the problem. I understand that DDD is not an indicator of pain, that people can have it and not feel the symptoms. I asked Dr. Clavel if he thinks i would need a discogram to be sure, he said NO. So i'm gonna go with that, throw myself into the fire and hopefully come out a new man.

marlin5353 01-26-2014 05:24 PM

Good Wishes Bwink
I hope you are going to be a great success story on this forum.

bwink23 01-26-2014 07:51 PM


Originally Posted by Surprised 1 (Post 104019)
Somewhere along the decision making path I read "they don't fuse hips or knees why fuse the spine?" Makes sense to me.

VERY GOOD POINT!! It is a mobile segment and is intended to be that way...that's how we were designed. Fusions do have their place and there are many success stories(and many horrific ones). Disc degeneration at adjacent levels due to fusion is very REAL, and surgeons will acknowledge that themselves. Some locations are more harmful to fuse than others. There are many posters here who had prior fusions, only to find themselves in need of more surgery for DDD to other levels. One spine surgeon i saw didn't even want to recommend a 2-level fusion to me, and he knew i needed it. Any chance to conserve your natural discs is a chance worth taking. ADR's can be revised and have been....fusions are permanent.

As a future Hybrid patient of fusion/ADR....I have read literature that results are comparable or better from a fusion at L5/S1 and an ADR at L4/L5 as opposed to an ADR at each level. So fusions, not ideal, are not a death sentence. Competitive athletes have gotten them for years and continued to compete at a high level.

bwink23 01-26-2014 08:01 PM


Originally Posted by marlin5353 (Post 104022)
I hope you are going to be a great success story on this forum.

That makes 2 of Us !!! I won't be the first poster here to do 2 operations in the same day, but i think i will be the first where one of those operations was a hybrid construct. Now i'm nervous. :confused:

Stonewall_Boris 01-26-2014 08:52 PM


If you weren't nervous you wouldn't be human. I may have missed your post on this but I hope your not doing the trip alone. IMHO, your in good hands with Clavel. For whatever reason it seems that the European doctors can do more. The other Canadian that had surgery the same day as I had a 2 level anterior ADR and a 3 level posterior fusion. He showed me his xray and I'm sorry to say I thought of Frankenstein. But, I'm told, he is doing well and was back to work after 6 months post op.

FranklySir 01-26-2014 09:14 PM


My reasons: I went twice

1-Same old story here Gold standard.
2-Read between lines with many Docs. They are afraid of getting sued.
3-They dont have the skill set to do the operation and fall back on what they know.
4-M6 disc. Its sad since IMHO its one of the if not the best unit for MY conditions. Typical lawsuit nonsense which again backs the Doc theory here.
5-Spoke to six surgeons here which all wanted to fuse and also agreed I was perfect for ADR BUT we don't do it.
6-Stepped approach. ADR can be fused if problems arise. Not easy but can be done. M6 is relatively simple to remove. Multiple conversations with Clavel regarding this and he explained the whole procedure if. No different added concerns with going back in on a failed fusion.
7-Europe just plainly has ten times the practice at this procedure. 50th in line or #3000. Me i'll take one of the guys with the most expertise.
8-Hard to find anyone to do two level. Insurance aside since that will be a fight either way.

There are more but these are the most prevelent.

Good topic Stone.


bwink23 01-26-2014 09:47 PM


That's called BREAKING IT DOWN. If you could magically transport the best available options to us (M6 or future) with the European surgical experience and no fights from the insurance companies....these discussions and debates would be MUCH LESS involved, and much less hair being pulled out. I like this topic as well and should be a permanent attachment thread with it's own header.

I hate to undercut our country by taking my U.S. money to foreign land, but hey since when did i have to go overseas to get a U.S.-made product??


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:34 PM.

© Copyright 2006-2017 All rights reserved.