Category: Spine Surgery

Cervical Spine Fracture – aka Broken Neck

Image of Dr. Mark McFarland

Mark W. McFarland, DO There are seven cervical vertebrae or neck bones in the human body.  When one of these bones becomes fractured, commonly due to accidents like diving into shallow water, a car crash, a fall from a ladder or another height, or a collision in sports, or from having weakened bones from aging,… Read more »

Injuries and Fractures of the Thoracic Spine

Jeffrey R. Carlson, MD As a busy Orthopaedic Physician, I often see and treat patients for and write articles about the cervical spine (neck) and the lumbar spine (lower back).  Today, I’m going to focus on the thoracic spine or the middle back, the area where the rib cage is located.  Percentage wise, I do… Read more »

Tumors of the Spine

  Jeffrey R. Carlson, MD Tumors are an abnormal collection or mass of cells that multiply rapidly without the “on/off” switch normal cells possess.  Spinal tumors that are directly related to spine cells are rare and we are not sure what causes most spinal tumors; however, a very small percentage can be caused by genetic… Read more »

Lumbar Spine Fusion

  Mark W. McFarland, DO As a busy spine surgeon, I routinely perform Lumbar Spine Fusion surgery.  In this article, I will discuss this procedure and how it is used to improve function and relieve pain in patients with certain spinal conditions. The lumbar spine is made up of five bone segments, called vertebra, which… Read more »

At-Home Exercises to do While Waiting for your Lumbar Spine Surgery to be Rescheduled

Tom Toothaker

Tom Toothaker, PT, DPT As a Physical Therapist who works for the Orthopaedic & Spine Center, I help many patients build their strength and flexibility after Lumbar Spine Surgery. For those of you waiting for surgery, it’s been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you’re feeling frustrated and disappointed, it’s understandable. Let’s use that… Read more »

My Spine Surgery Was Cancelled due to Coronavirus – Now What?

Jeffrey R. Carlson, MD Federal, state and local mandates regarding postponing elective surgery during the Coronavirus outbreak have caused many patients quite a bit of concern and frustration.  Managing the logistics of your life around a planned surgery take a lot of time and effort. There are work, family, and social considerations, as well as… Read more »

Common Back Injuries

Mark W. McFarland, DO Did you know that back pain is the number one reason for which people seek medical attention?  Having a healthy, non-painful back is essential to living and working well.  Let’s discuss some common back injuries and how I treat them. Back Strain – One of the most common complaints I hear… Read more »

I Think my Balance is Off & I Keep Falling – Why?

Jeffrey R. Carlson, MD The title of this article echoes complaints I often hear from patients in the exam room.  Poor balance can be caused or exacerbated by many things – aging, medications, blood pressure, ear infections or disorders, arthritis, circulation issues – the list is long.  However, most folks don’t know that a problem… Read more »

Do I need an Electrical Stimulator after Spine Fusion?

Jeffrey R. Carlson, MD Patients who are considering spine fusion have lots of questions about their outcomes related to their surgery.  Will this procedure work? How will I be limited after my surgery? When can I get back to work?  These questions are certainly valid, but all are secondary to the actual success of the… Read more »