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Do I need to see a spinal neurosurgeon?

Spinal Neurosurgeons can treat common conditions related to neck and arm pain (brachalgia) and back and leg pain (sciatica); spinal disease related trauma/injury, tumours, infections and spinal degenerative conditions. Additionally, they are better equipped to treat spinal intradural tumours, syringomyelia (dilatation of the central spinal canal), Chiari malformation (herniation of the hind brain into the top of the spinal canal); and further complications like CSF leak, recurrent discs prolapses, adhesions/fibrosis around the nerves(root fibrosis) and within the spinal canal itself (arachnoiditis).

Do I need surgery?

The main purpose of spinal surgery is to correct a spinal condition in individuals who fail to show improvement after a period of non-surgical treatment including pain medication, modified activities and physical therapy. 

Surgical options are generally considered when the spinal symptoms persist and impairs the ability to work or undertake leisure or normal daily activities. Some operations are performed using minimally invasive techniques and allow for a quick recovery (e.g lumbar microdiscectomy or cervical foraminotomy), whilst other operations, such as lumbar instrumented fusion for back pain, are more extensive and have a longer recovery time.

What is a spinal neurosurgeon?

Neurosurgery is a medical super-speciality dealing with the surgical and non-surgical treatment of diseases of the brain, spine and peripheral nerves. 

A neurosurgeon goes through five years of medical school followed by prerequisite two to three years foundation training. This is followed by six years on a residency programme which involves training in all aspects of cranial and spinal surgery. There is an exit examination towards the end of this, which confers the fellowship with the Royal College of Surgeons in Surgical Neurology – FRCS (SN). A spinal neurosurgeon further undergoes post-residency fellowship at a spinal centre which usually consists of a faculty of both Orthopaedic and Neurosurgical spinal surgeons. 

With access to consultants in Pain Management, Consultant Radiologists and Spinal Physiotherapists our aim is to deal with your problem fast. Ask your GP for a referral to our spinal neurosurgeons at Bristol Hospital - The Chesterfield.

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