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Old 04-23-2007, 04:43 PM   #1
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bw67 HB User
Still Loving Non-fusion

hey-

Just wanted to make a new post to say that I'm now almost NINE MONTHS post op on a NON-FUSION procedure, and I'm STILL doing great...

a good neck and shoulder massage about once a month is all I need to keep on track...

I take a random ibuprofen or two now and then, but other than that I am on no prescribed meds...

check out my other post NON FUSION OPTION for a more detailed account of my experience...

I continue to hope that by being one of the few members on here that chose to NOT do fusion, I at least let people know that there are other options out there, depending of course on your particular condition...

good luck

BW

Last edited by bw67; 04-23-2007 at 04:51 PM.

 
Old 04-24-2007, 10:28 PM   #2
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Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

Hi, I just received calls and letters from two doctors who said I am probably a good candidate for non fusion! I am soooo happy, but still very scared at the same time. I think it is the signing of the papers right before the procedure....if you know what I mean. Both docs received my MRI and tomorrow I go for the nerve tests...yuck. I guess when I get all tests in and doctors opinions back from both docs, I will make a decision about which one to go with. I really appreciate all the info regarding non fusion...and it seems to be the way to go....nothing to lose and all to gain. I have read so much about the fusions causing weakness later on above and below the spine. What I would like to know is why don't more surgeons do these type procedures? (The is CED cervical endoscopic discectomy.) Anyone know? Are is there anything I need to know that would be a negative? Just curious.

 
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Old 04-26-2007, 10:46 AM   #3
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bw67 HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

dsch-

wondering which doctors you're dealing with and where...

as for why more doctors don't do non-fusion procedures- now this is just my opinion, based on what I've been told, and what I've researched.

I've been told that it's because it's fairly new, and not everyone wants to learn a whole new procedure when they've been used to doing fusion for so long. People are reluctant to change you know? And if there aren't a lot of doctors performing the minimally invasive procedures, that makes it hard on young doctors coming up to learn about it.

I've also been told fusion costs more than the minimally invasive stuff. Although, that's hard to tell- because most fusions are covered by insurance, whereas a lot of the minimally invasive providers don't take insurance.

anyhow, there's my 2 or 3 cents...

good luck

bw

 
Old 05-02-2007, 08:04 AM   #4
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Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

BW67...
sorry I have not been on in a while...Schiffer and M. Reuter are who I am talking to. Love them both. Any info?

Last edited by dschus1156; 05-02-2007 at 09:15 PM.

 
Old 05-04-2007, 08:18 PM   #5
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bw67 HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

dsch-

reuter was the guy for me. for one, he was in network with my insurance. two- his offices in FLA were 10 minutes from where my aunt lives so I had a free place to stay. three- cheap flight on southwest. four- I preferred his minimally invasive procedure over schiffer's.

Dr. Schiffer was extremely nice and knowledgeable over the phone- but as I understood his procedure, he was going to actually REMOVE the problem discs and would allow scar tissue, etc to essentially form discs in their place. One doctor that I saw here in TN claimed to have performed the same procedure in the past, but what he found was that the majority of his patients' vertabraes were fusing together naturally on their own. But the problem was that they would fuse OPPOSITE the way you'd like them to.

That put enough doubt in my mind regarding Dr. Schiffer's approach that when you threw that in the pot, along with him being out of network with my insurance, and much more difficult travel logistics, I just didn't feel like it was right for me.

Dr. Reuter's procedure doesn't involve fusion AT ALL...

Every situation is different however, Dr. Schiffer may be the best fit for you...

If you read my post NON FUSION OPTION, it'll lay out Dr. Reuter's procedure, as I understood it.

best of luck

bw

 
Old 05-05-2007, 10:50 AM   #6
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dschus1156 HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

I found out Friday that I have a large bone spur at one level and herniated disc at another....Don't know if Reuter can/will work on me.

 
Old 05-05-2007, 12:12 PM   #7
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bw67 HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

did reuter tell you specifically it wouldn't work?? I was lucky I guess that they felt my pain was NOT caused by spurs. But that was nine months ago, maybe they can do something different regarding spurs that they couldn't back then...

have you had a DISCOGRAM done?? while you may have a bone spur, maybe it's not the cause of your pain?? a discogram would help determine that...

good luck

bw

 
Old 05-05-2007, 01:44 PM   #8
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dschus1156 HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

BW67

I heard back from Schiffer and he said that he can do a CED at one level and then ACD at the other ( removing the disc, but no fusion in the area with the spur) He says he had it done years ago and has not had problems...I guess the area fills in with scar tissue from what I have read. All the research I have done puts Schiffer, Reuter, ****, jho ect...into the same school of thought with some difference ie Reuter puts something in the disc space.....Anyway he is supposed to call me next week with information....he has not communicated with me except to send him my reports...I am kind of getting several opinions....from the doctors I really like. I am thankful that I have that option....thanks for communicating with me.

Last edited by dschus1156; 05-05-2007 at 01:46 PM. Reason: add info

 
Old 05-06-2007, 05:41 PM   #9
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Escgirl HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

HI I am a patient of dr.reuter from feb 2003 - and I love him and he is the best! Trust him big time.

 
Old 05-06-2007, 06:25 PM   #10
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bw67 HB User
Re: Still Loving Non-fusion

dsch-

you have to do what you feel is right for you. Dr. Reuter was definitely the right move for my situation.

Does Dr. Schiffer take your insurance?? Again, based on my own research I had the following concerns about Dr. Schiffer-

1. I was told by a doctor here in TN who claimed that he used to perform the same procedure as Dr. Schiffer that with his procedure the vertabrae tended to fuse naturally, in the OPPOSITE way that is ideal- from front to back vs. back to front. The TN doctor's theory was, if it's going to end up fusing anyways, why not CONTROL the way it fuses by doing a conventional fusion and have it heal/fuse properly? Which made sense to me...

2. I would have felt more comfortable with Dr. Schiffer's procedure if I had been able to find other doctors out there who were also doing it with success.

3. In my situation, he did not take my insurance AND the travel logistics just weren't good for me. While I would love to go to San Fran, the Florida situation with Dr. Reuter was ideal all the way around...

I preferred Dr. Reuter's procedure in that he doesn't actually REMOVE the entire disc. Just the nucleus which is the part that leaks through the tear. He then lasers the tear shut and injects a gel made of your own platelets to "pump" the disc back up. I liked the fact that if for some reason it didn't work, I really hadn't lost any ground- hadn't removed discs, fused vertabrae, etc. But if it DID work, I would have bought myself considerable time to allow medical technology to advance further to where artificial discs, or some other corrective measure could become the norm. So far it has worked, 9 months and counting...

Again, best of luck

bw

 
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