Diagnosing Lower Back Pain & Other Symptoms

Patients
The lower back is involved in upper body support, spinal protection, and movement so pain in this region can be debilitating and remove you from the activities that you love with symptoms such as back spasms, lower back pain, or limited range of motion . Lower back symptoms can have several causes including lumbar spine abnormalities such as a herniated disc, sciatica, or spinal stenosis; tissue abnormalities such as strained muscles or ligaments; and other health issues such as arthritis or kidney stones. Below we’ll go through the lower back diagnosis process and touch briefly on treatment. Lower Back Diagnosis Your doctor will start diagnosis with a patient history, meaning that they will ask you about current symptoms, daily activities, and recent injuries. This may include questions such as whether…
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Endoscopic Spine Surgery – Candidacy & Laser Spine Surgery Comparison

Patients
Our expert spine doctors at Preferred Surgicenter treat symptoms of back and neck pain with a combination of conservative treatment, and surgical treatment when necessary. To strive for the fastest recovery time and the lowest infection rates in Orland Park, IL and in the south suburbs of Chicago, IL our surgeons specialize in endoscopic spine surgery, a form of minimally invasive spine surgery. Am I An Endoscopic Surgery Candidate? Endoscopic spine surgeries include XLIF, TLIF, Discectomy, Microdecompression, and Spinal Fusion procedures. These can be used to treat a herniated disc, sciatic nerve compression, spinal stenosis, and other spinal abnormalities in the cervical, thoracic, or lumbar spine that may cause back pain or neck pain. Generally your doctor will recommend minimally invasive endoscopic spine surgery if your pain has not improved…
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Thoracic Spine Injury & Treatment

Patients
The thoracic spine (midback vertebrae) is unique in that it has limited mobility relative to the cervical spine (neck) and the lumbar spine (lower back). In addition to supporting body weight, it serves a protective function because the thoracic spine is the connecting point for the ribs and provides rear coverage for the heart and lungs. The cervical spine is made of twelve vertebrae and abnormalities in these bones can cause upper back pain or other symptoms. Thoracic Spine Injury Injury in the thoracic spine can be acute (caused by a single incident) or chronic (caused by repeated motions or pressure over time). Acute thoracic spine injury may have been caused, for example, by a car accident or blunt force while playing sports. Chronic thoracic spine injury may have been…
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Causes of Lower Back Pain

Patients
Lower back pain can be acute (caused by a single incident) or chronic (caused over time). Acute symptoms tend to be localized and can be reduced with rest. Examples would be lower back pain caused by a car accident or by tearing a muscle while lifting something heavy. Chronic back pain tends to spread through the limbs and the intensity can fluctuate. Examples would be back pain caused by poor posture or repetitive motions over time. What Causes Lower Back Pain? Causes of lower back pain tend to involve injury of relevant muscles, spine abnormalities, or certain other health conditions. Some specific causes include: Sprain/Strains: Sprains are injuries that involve ligaments which connect bone to bone. Strains are injuries that involve tendons which connect bone to muscle or involve the…
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XLIF Versus TLIF

Patients
What are XLIF and TLIF? Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion (XLIF) and Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion (TLIF) are both endoscopic spine surgery procedures that can be used to treat a herniated disc, pinched nerve, Spondylolisthesis, and other spine abnormalities. Both procedures relieve symptoms of lower back and leg pain. Both are minimally invasive stabilization procedures. The damaged disc in your spine is replaced with an implant that is filled with bone graft. The implant is further secured with screws which prevents motion and the accumulation of further damage in your spine at that area. Why XLIF or TLIF? TLIF is more similar to other forms of endoscopic spine surgery in that you are laying on your stomach and the surgeon uses a series of dilators to part the muscles in your…
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Orthopedic Regenerative Medicine – What Is It & Do I Qualify?

Patients
Stem cell injections and Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) treatment are two forms of regenerative medicine, a non-surgical alternative to traditional orthopedic treatments. These treatment strategies accelerate the body’s natural healing mechanisms to repair and restore damaged tissue, for example in the knee, hip, shoulder, and elbow. Stem Cell Therapy Stem cells have the potential to replace cells in many different body tissues such as tendons or cartilage. Stem cell therapy involves extraction of stem cells from adult non-controversial sources, such as blood or bone marrow, and then injection near the injury site. The stem cells then transform into the same type of cell as the injured tissue and speed up healing. Stem cell therapy can be used in lieu of traditional treatments such as physical therapy, steroid injections, and pain…
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FREE MRI Scan Review – Why Should I Get One?

FREE MRI Scan Review – Why Should I Get One?

Patients
If you saw a doctor about neck or back pain, they may have recommended that you get a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan. These give your doctor a picture of your bones, joints, and soft tissue (e.g. muscle or cartilage) so that your doctor can diagnose the source of your neck or back pain. The scan can be used to identify the presence of a herniated disc, a pinched nerve, spondylolisthesis, or a number of other spine abnormalities that may be the cause of your pain. Why Get An MRI Scan Review? If you’ve already had your MRI scan, a doctor specializing in spine treatment can use your MRI image to determine the best treatment for you. Our spine doctors have been helping the Chicago and Orland Park communities get…
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Questions to Ask Your Orthopedic Surgeon Before Surgery

Questions to Ask Your Orthopedic Surgeon Before Surgery

Patients
Questions to Ask Your Orthopedic Surgeon Before Surgery Going to a surgeon can be an intimidating process. You may feel a bit vulnerable putting yourself in their hands, especially when you don't know the surgeon well or don't feel well informed about your different treatment options. Below are a list of questions that you can ask your orthopedic surgeon to make sure that you are getting the best surgeon, understanding your condition, and selecting the right treatment option. About the Surgeon How long have you been in practice? Are you board certified? Have you seen this condition before? How many times have you performed the recommended procedure? Will there be other physicians assisting you in the operation? Are they board certified? Where can I get a second opinion? About your…
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