NeurosurgeryOne, Denver’s most comprehensive brain and spine care practice, has expanded its non-surgical and pain management spine services by adding physiatry services. Physiatry is the use of non-surgical treatments aimed at restoring function, reducing pain, and improving quality of life for patients.
NeurosurgeryOne, Denver’s most comprehensive neurosurgical practice, welcomed a new neurosurgeon to its practice. Dr. Fotis G. Souslian, MD, FAANS, will begin serving patients April 1 in the practice’s Lakewood clinic on the campus of St. Anthony Hospital.
Dr. Souslian is a board-certified neurosurgeon who completed a renowned orthopedic and neurosurgery fellowship in complex and minimally invasive spine surgery. He has extensive experience treating orthopedic disorders of the spine, ranging from degenerative conditions of the cervical and lumbar spine to minimally invasive techniques in treating sacroiliac joint dysfunction and pain. He brings to St. Anthony Hospital over half a decade’s worth of experience of complex spine surgery and neurotrauma at a Level 1 trauma hospital in St. Paul, Minn., a Level 1 trauma center.
Neurosurgery One, Denver’s most comprehensive neurosurgical practice, has added a neurosurgeon to its clinical team. Dr. Kofi Kessey, MD, PhD, FAANS, will serve patients in the practice’s Lakewood clinic on the campus of St. Anthony Hospital.
Dr. Kessey is a board-certified neurosurgeon who specializes in the treatment of brain tumors both benign and malignant, metastatic disease, and degenerative spine conditions, particularly in the cervical and lumbar spine. He partners with his patients to find ideal treatment plans, offering choices that embrace the newest technology and medically proven treatments. He performs open and minimally invasive surgery as well as radiosurgery.
Dr. Kessey has a special interest in treating elderly patients with normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) who are experiencing gait imbalance, urinary symptoms, and cognitive decline. He has developed an evaluation protocol for NPH patients that allows him to predict whether or not they would benefit significantly from surgery, reducing unnecessary procedures.
Understanding the causes of lower back pain is the first step in finding a solution to relieve the pain. First, know that you’re not alone. Statistics show that up to 80 percent of Americans will have back or spine pain at some time in their lives. Much of the back pain we see at NeurosurgeryOne is in the lower back, in the area called the lumbar spine. The good news is that while there are many causes of lower back pain, it usually gets better on its own or with a few home remedies. Most patients will never have to visit a Denver spine surgeon.
If you have stabbing, shooting spine pain that runs down one side of your lower body, and a feeling of burning or tingling, you may have sciatica. Sciatica is a type of spine pain that typically gets worse when you remain in one position for a long time, and even when you cough or sneeze. It also can make your leg(s) feel numb or weak. In my experience as a neurosurgeon, about half of people will experience mild sciatica at some point in their life — usually after age 30. Most will get sciatica relief within six weeks with self-care treatments such as over-the-counter pain medicines, light exercise, and ice and heat.
When treatments like medications and physical therapy don’t do enough to relieve your spine pain, an epidural steroid injection may help. Injections for back pain deliver powerful medicine at or near the source of your pain and often helps relieve spine pain for months.
Here are answers to some of the most frequent questions patients ask about injections for spine pain.
South Denver Neurosurgery has developed an outstanding reputation among consumers and referring physicians for our high standard of neurosurgery care over the past 15 years. Since its inception, South Denver Neurosurgery has become one of the most experienced and comprehensive neurosurgery practices in Colorado. Our neurosurgeons specialize in spine surgery, brain tumors, aneurysms, trauma, trigeminal neuralgia, epilepsy, and DBS for Parkinson’s disease and essential tremor. We also believe strongly in being an advocate for our patients in an increasingly complex health care environment and offering them the full complement of cranial and spinal procedures, so they can obtain the treatment that best suits their condition, health, and personal goals.
For pain caused by nerve damage, see a neurosurgeon
If you’re bothered by chronic pain in your arms or legs, you’ve probably thought a lot about how to get rid of that pain. You might have wondered what caused it. But you may not have considered that the cause of your pain may offer clues about the best way to relieve your pain.
For example, if your pain is caused by a tight or pulled muscle, or osteoarthritis, your primary care physician or an orthopedic specialist, such as an orthopedic spine surgeon, may well be able to treat and resolve your pain.
Whiplash: Real, painful, and treatable
Television comedies and insurance scams may have given it a bad name, but whiplash is absolutely real. Whiplash occurs when sudden force pushes the neck and head backward and then forward, putting the cervical spine through lightning-quick motion and extreme stress. Whiplash is most often caused by traffic crashes, but football injuries and falls while skiing can also cause the condition.
Addressing concerns about pain medications after spine surgery
Startling statistics regarding opioid addiction have caused some patients planning back surgery to fear taking prescription pain medications after surgery. At the same time, evolving policies and efforts to curb opioid dependence have caused other patients to fear that they might not get the pain relief they need after back surgery.