Frank's Story: How Spine Surgery Gave One Man His Independence Back
Being Active Without Pain ‘Is a Great Relief’
Frank Grace, 75, had reached his limit: the leg and hip pain he had experienced for five years had become so severe that he could not stand easily at work, shop with his wife or keep his foot on the gas pedal while driving. Care from orthopedic spine surgeon Timothy Moore, MD, at University Hospitals Geauga Medical Center’s Spine and Pain Management Center, alleviated his pain.
“I have no more pain,” said Grace. “I’ve been able to do anything I’ve wanted to, including getting on my garage roof to repair shingles after a storm and putting in a large garden.”
Dr. Moore diagnosed Grace with lumbar canal stenosis. Degenerative arthritis in the lower back had caused Grace’s spine to squeeze nerves and the nerve sac in the area.
The initial course of treatment was conservative ¾ pain management instead of surgery. According to Dr. Moore, a majority of patients respond to pain management, but when Grace did not respond, Dr. Moore performed a lumbar laminectomy. This surgery relieved pressure on Grace’s spinal canal by removing the back of the bone of the affected lumbar vertebrae. Then, Dr. Moore inserted screws and rods to stabilize and fuse the remaining bone, known as a decompressive fusion.
“I’d recommend Dr. Moore to anyone for his skill, and his bedside manner is terrific,” said Grace. “I’d do the surgery again tomorrow if it was necessary. To be without pain while being active is a great relief.”