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  #81  
Old 04-04-2015, 01:46 AM
CGR CGR is offline
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Default another referral

Hello!

Just another option for you…Dr. Scott Blumenthal at Texas Back Institute in Plano, TX (a Dallas suburb) has participated in many ADR FDA clinical trials over the years. He was part of the FDA approval trial for the Mobi-C and his patients are now in 9-10 year follow ups. He's also very proficient at 2 level ADR's as well if necessary. I recently found Dr. Blumenthal through a great deal of research (in the U.S. and abroad) and chose him for my ADR at C-5/6. I found him to be on the cutting edge and progressive while at the same time prudent and cautious. He uses several types of ADR implants and often chooses certain implants based on the patient's anatomy and condition. He does like the Mobi-C for many reasons in many circumstances.

Dr. Blumenthal was my surgeon Feb. 24th, 2015 and completed a Mobi-C ADR on C5/6. It's only been 5-6 weeks but I am very pleased so far! I lived in severe posterior neck pain for years and began having numbness going down my entire right arm. I only have "surgery" pain left in my neck and my right arm is regaining feeling each week.

Dr. Blumenthal specializes in ADR as well as his partner Dr. Zeigler. Both are very much worth researching if you have time. Glad to correspond by private message if you desire.

All the best,
Carolyn
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CGR

Herniated discs at C5/6 & L3/4, 4/5, and S 1
2000 IDET in L 3/4-S1 & no improvement
2010 Micro-Disc & Lam L 3/4-S1 failed after 12 months
2012 Re-do Mico-Disc & Lam L3/4-S1 but still have significant pain in hip and back and leg
2013 Stem Cell Injections L 3/4-S1 & C5/6 helped temporarily but not enough for what I spent $$$
2015-February Mobi ADR at C5/6 with Dr. Blumenthal at Texas Back in Dallas. So far doing well. Will address lumbar surgery after I heal from cervical surgery.
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  #82  
Old 04-04-2015, 02:07 AM
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Cynlite Cynlite is offline
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CGR, Congratulations on your surgery with Dr. Blumenthal! I'm glad you are doing well and on the other side of the surgery. Thank you for taking the time to post about your surgery! NJ Gene plans on having surgery with him soon too. Dr. Blumenthal is a highly respected ADR doctor in the states. I have considered Dr. Blumenthal but, am in a wait and see mode right now until I get my MRIs. I do expect that the M6-C will be the better disc for me than the Mobi-C because of my older facet joints. However, I need to get the rest of my information and new MRIs to Dr. Zeegers in Europe to get his opinion before I make a decision on what I'm going to do. He has more experience than most surgeons in the world when it comes to ADR so, I value his opinion and analysis of my condition.

I would have to pay out of pocket to see Dr. Blumenthal and I would have to pay out of pocket if I go to Europe. I'll go where ever I think I will get the best outcome. Experience is a really important factor in my decision because if things go wrong during surgery, I want a surgeon who has hopefully seen it all. Surgeons seem to get married to using one manufacturer's disc or another so, finding someone who has experience with many of them and can give an unbiased opinion on what will fit best in the body is kind of a challenge. In Europe, they have more flexibility in making last minute disc changes based on anatomy. I have never heard about that in the states so far.

I may be in touch with you later Carolyn to ask you questions about TBI so, thanks for your input! I wish you the very best in your recovery.
__________________
2006: epidural shots did nothing; 2 surgeons recommended 2 level fusion, I declined.
2007 - 2010 4 foraminotomy and cord decompression cervical surgeries and 2 endoscopic discectomy T7-T8 surgeries; total 6 with Dr. Jho (Pittsburgh,PA) My C6/C7 autofused around 2009.
2013 - 2015: epidurals 3 times (again did nothing) and 4 Radiofrequency ablation (or RFA) procedures.
2016 more RFAs, hit the 10 year mark of this insanity and pain, 3 level M6-C ADR with Dr. Clavel May 19, 2016
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  #83  
Old 04-05-2015, 03:32 PM
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Cynlite Cynlite is offline
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Posts: 666
Default Weighing my options

It seems that just about every surgeon has a failure under his belt. This is the concern that weighs on my mind should I go to Germany or Spain for surgery. If I go abroad for surgery and then return with problems, I will be in a pickle. The European surgeons are just too far ahead of the U.S. so, it seems the U.S. surgeons are not able to offer much help after the fact. I keep looking for reasons to justify staying in the states for surgery but, it's difficult because of the differences in experience. I'm worried that the disc will not be the right size, not placed properly or moves after surgery? These are the problems I read about here in the forums.

I posted the list of all the ADR doctors best known in the U.S. There are some surgeons on the list that many here have had successful surgeries with and gone back to living there lives. Dr. Yeung on the list in Arizona where I live only uses the Prodisc. With better technology available, I would not even consider that disc. I hope to go see the Mobi-C specialist at the Barrow Institute but, even then I'm pretty sure that he hasn't completed a two level surgery or it would be in the news. There is only one surgeon in Arizona that has completed a two level that I've read about. I'm not sure there is anyone in the country with a lot of experience doing two levels.

I think that if I stay in the states, I'll have to pay out of pocket and go to another state. Doesn't that put me in the same boat of issues as going to Europe? Are there any really great surgeons in the U.S. that have the experience I can trust to do a two level cervical disc replacement since it's so new here? Dr. Bierstedt thinks I need to replace two discs. Hopefully, I'll conclude that is too aggressive. I guess I'll have to wait and see what the other surgeons have to say. My pain specialist thinks I am making things too complicated by going to so many surgeons. I think, how can I not if I want to find the right answer for me?
__________________
2006: epidural shots did nothing; 2 surgeons recommended 2 level fusion, I declined.
2007 - 2010 4 foraminotomy and cord decompression cervical surgeries and 2 endoscopic discectomy T7-T8 surgeries; total 6 with Dr. Jho (Pittsburgh,PA) My C6/C7 autofused around 2009.
2013 - 2015: epidurals 3 times (again did nothing) and 4 Radiofrequency ablation (or RFA) procedures.
2016 more RFAs, hit the 10 year mark of this insanity and pain, 3 level M6-C ADR with Dr. Clavel May 19, 2016
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  #84  
Old 04-10-2015, 04:01 PM
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Cynlite Cynlite is offline
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Posts: 666
Default MRI's done

Finally got my thoracic and lumbar MRI's done yesterday. I see nothing on my Lumbar thank goodness. But, the thoracic looks suspect to me and perhaps is responsible for my walking problems. I'm still waiting on the report. Here are a few images of what causes me some concern. As soon as I start moving around, I always feel like I'm being stabbed in the back and the muscles spasm. I've had trouble with this part of my back since the first car accident at age 17. The disc looks kind of flat to me now. Hope it's not on it's way to autofusion like my neck! I sure hope that a trained eye tells me this is normal for my age because I really don't want to have surgery on my neck and my back at the same time....yikes.

Nothing like an MRI to let me know I have "fat back" and need to lose 20 pounds LOL. Since 80% of weight loss is what I put in my mouth, I have confidence I'll drop the weight over time...I'm not going to freak out about it.



__________________
2006: epidural shots did nothing; 2 surgeons recommended 2 level fusion, I declined.
2007 - 2010 4 foraminotomy and cord decompression cervical surgeries and 2 endoscopic discectomy T7-T8 surgeries; total 6 with Dr. Jho (Pittsburgh,PA) My C6/C7 autofused around 2009.
2013 - 2015: epidurals 3 times (again did nothing) and 4 Radiofrequency ablation (or RFA) procedures.
2016 more RFAs, hit the 10 year mark of this insanity and pain, 3 level M6-C ADR with Dr. Clavel May 19, 2016
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  #85  
Old 04-11-2015, 10:56 AM
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jss jss is offline
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I don't recall anyone coming here needing treatment to the thoracic spine. Of course at 50+ some amount of asymptomatic DDD at any level is possible and 'normal'. We only care if it causes symptoms.

Do you have the axial image at that level?

Is your thoracic pain bad enough that you want this treated?
__________________
C4/5 - ACDF in 2000
C5/6 - ACDF in 2002
C3/4 & C6/7 - M6 ADR, Nov 2009, Barcelona
Conceded defeat to a manifestly disingenuous BCBS-TX in my quest for reimbursement, Jan 2011
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  #86  
Old 04-11-2015, 11:42 AM
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Cynlite Cynlite is offline
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jss, I am in chronic and constant pain from my head down the back of my body to my feet. If I lay around and be sedentary, I can manage it but, that's really no way to live my life. If I walk or try to lift anything, the pain starts and it is just plain embarrassing in public because I sometimes have to stop and sit and wait for the level 10 episode to pass. The surgeons I have seen have not been able to diagnose or fix my walking issues. The pain affects both sides of my body pretty equally which doesn't make this any easier to diagnose. I also get electrical shocks throughout my body that just floor me. It's like being electrocuted.

I believe my symptoms are coming from my cervical spine because I got the most benefit from those surgeries in the past. My C5/C6 was so bad that first surgeon was concerned I would be paralyzed from it. Oddly, at the time all I was having were headaches but, six month later the walking issues started. Walking is an atypical symptom of the cervical spine however. I would really like to have one final surgery that fixes me instead of waking up in no better condition. I have had six surgeries already so, apparently my spine problems have not been easily diagnosed or fixed. Hopefully, Dr. Zeegers will figure it out!

The thoracic spine is not typically operated on because it's a dangerous surgery the way I understand it. The surgeries I had on it were minimally invasive so, did not involve having to cut me wide open. I'm not sure if I have an axial image that shows anything. If I find one, I'll post it. Believe me, I don't want surgery on my thoracic spine!
__________________
2006: epidural shots did nothing; 2 surgeons recommended 2 level fusion, I declined.
2007 - 2010 4 foraminotomy and cord decompression cervical surgeries and 2 endoscopic discectomy T7-T8 surgeries; total 6 with Dr. Jho (Pittsburgh,PA) My C6/C7 autofused around 2009.
2013 - 2015: epidurals 3 times (again did nothing) and 4 Radiofrequency ablation (or RFA) procedures.
2016 more RFAs, hit the 10 year mark of this insanity and pain, 3 level M6-C ADR with Dr. Clavel May 19, 2016
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  #87  
Old 04-12-2015, 10:00 PM
Cynlite's Avatar
Cynlite Cynlite is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 666
Default ADR Costs I have so far

__________________
2006: epidural shots did nothing; 2 surgeons recommended 2 level fusion, I declined.
2007 - 2010 4 foraminotomy and cord decompression cervical surgeries and 2 endoscopic discectomy T7-T8 surgeries; total 6 with Dr. Jho (Pittsburgh,PA) My C6/C7 autofused around 2009.
2013 - 2015: epidurals 3 times (again did nothing) and 4 Radiofrequency ablation (or RFA) procedures.
2016 more RFAs, hit the 10 year mark of this insanity and pain, 3 level M6-C ADR with Dr. Clavel May 19, 2016
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  #88  
Old 04-12-2015, 10:19 PM
Stonewall_Boris Stonewall_Boris is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 547
Default Hey Cynlite

Have a google at this ... Modic changes, it's been posted on the forum but a further google might provide some more info.
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  #89  
Old 04-13-2015, 02:47 AM
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scoop302 scoop302 is offline
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Posts: 193
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Mine included 3 flights, first class, 3 days at the hotel while I was in the hospital. I almost went to laser spine institute, aka: center for artificial disc replacement, and some others. They were going to charge $25,000 for the surgery, I had to pay for the disc's, bryan, at $10,000 each. Times two, it would be $45,000 plus incidentals. I never did find out what those were. That would have been local for me.
__________________
1979 car accident: rear ended
1980 ACDF C4-5
4/8/11 stopped, hit again
3 epidurals, PT, 2 MRI's,etc.
scheduled 3 times for C5-6, 6-7 fusion,
plus laminectomy at C3-4, and C 7, advised to do Bilateral lamino-foraminotomy C5-6, C6-7,a Percutaneous Discectomy L4 -L5
7/14 RFA on L3 to L5 (awake, local only)
C5-6,6-7 M-6 ADR with Dr. Clavel 9/17/14,
12/7/15 RFA L2-S1, Facet injections C2-7
6/3/16 RFA L2-S1, epidural L4,5, 8/26/16 RFA C1-7
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  #90  
Old 04-13-2015, 09:06 AM
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jss jss is offline
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Posts: 1,411
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I didn't share my cost because it was so long ago that it's no longer relevant. Here it is anyway;

Nov'09, $29k, 2 level Mobi-C, Clavel, Spain, Quron, 1.29 exchange rate
__________________
C4/5 - ACDF in 2000
C5/6 - ACDF in 2002
C3/4 & C6/7 - M6 ADR, Nov 2009, Barcelona
Conceded defeat to a manifestly disingenuous BCBS-TX in my quest for reimbursement, Jan 2011
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