If you have low back pain, neck pain or sciatica you may benefit from the skilled services of a neurosurgeon to correct your problem and get back to your normal activity and function. Finding the best NJ spine doctor should be a top priority when facing surgery, as this can give you the greatest chance at a successful outcome. Remember, not all NJ spine doctors are the same, and finding the right doctor for you is of utmost importance.
Back pain affects nearly everyone at one time or another. The symptoms coming from your back – pain, tingling or weakness – can limit your ability to move normally and participate fully in work and recreational activities.
There are many causes of back pain or neck pain. These may include:
- Facet joint arthritis
- Degenerative disc disease
- Spinal stenosis
- Compression fracture
- Herniated or bulging discs
Whenever any of these problems occur, spinal nerves emerging from your back can become pinched, sending pain or other symptoms through your back or legs. Treatments for your symptoms, like physical therapy or injections, may be adequate to effectively treat your problem. Sometimes, the damage in your spine is too severe and your pain is too great, and you need surgery with a NJ neurosurgeon to correct your problem.
When You Need Surgery
When your doctor recommends a surgical consult for your back pain or neck pain, you should take time to understand surgery and what it entails. There are different types of surgical procedures. These may include:
- Laminectomy and discectomy
- Vertebral kyphoplasty
- Spinal fusion
The type of surgery your doctor chooses to do depends on your specific condition. Your doctor should explain to you the exact procedure you are having so you can fully understand your course of treatment.
More important than the type of procedure for your spine is the surgical approach that your spine doctor takes. In general, there are two different approaches to spine surgery: the traditional open approach and minimally invasive spine surgery.
The standard open approach to spine surgery involves a large incision, dissection or your spinal muscles and a lengthy recovery time. Minimally invasive spine surgery, a newer innovative approach to spine surgery, involves a tiny incision and minimal disruption of your spinal muscles. Specialized instruments are used to cut away disc or joint material that is pinching on your spinal nerves.
Many New Jersey residents choose to have minimally invasive spine surgery over open surgery because it offers them a rapid return to normal activity with less pain. Finding a top-rated NJ spine doctor who performs minimally invasive spine surgery is a good idea when considering an operation for your back or neck pain.
Qualities of Top-Rated Spine Doctors in NJ
There are many different NJ spine doctors, so what sets them apart from each other? What are some qualities of the top-rated neurosurgeons that you should look for when considering surgery?
First and foremost, you should find a doctor who makes you feel comfortable. Meet with at least two doctors that regularly perform spine surgery, and ask a lot of questions about your condition and pending surgery. Your doctor should take time to answer your questions and concerns.
He or she should feel like a trusted ally when going into surgery for your back pain. If you meet with a doctor who rushes you in and out of the office without explaining your surgery, it may be time to move on and find a different NJ spine doctor.
It is often said that a good surgeon knows when to perform surgery, and a great surgeon knows when not to perform surgery. Some doctors are quick to offer surgery for back or neck pain. The right doctor for you should offer you alternatives to surgery. He or she should explain why you need surgery and what the consequences would be if surgery is delayed.
Of course, some spinal problems require emergency surgery to correct, but these cases are rare. Most patients have time to make an informed decision about their surgery, and the right NJ spine doctor should help you make that decision.
The doctor you choose for your spine surgery should practice innovative diagnostic and surgical techniques. Ask your neurosurgeon if he or she performs minimally invasive spine surgery for your condition. Some doctors continue to use traditional methods like open spine surgery that may delay your healing or increase your risk of infection.
Finding a NJ spine doctor who performs minimally invasive spine surgery is a good sign that he or she stays current on innovative and cutting edge approaches to spine care. Not all doctors are the same, and finding the best doctor for you may take some time. Working with a top rated NJ spine doctor for your back pain can have a positive effect on your overall experience and outcome with spine surgery.
Find the Best Neurosurgeon For You
So how do you go about finding the best New Jersey spine doctor? There are some things you should do to locate a neurosurgeon you feel comfortable with, including:
- Asking family members or friends about their experience with back pain treatments and spine surgery
- Searching for NJ neurosurgeons who perform minimally invasive spine surgery
- Asking your primary care physician for a referral to a trusted spine surgeon
Most importantly, take time to meet with a few spine doctors in NJ and find the best fit for you. Your relationship with your neurosurgeon should feel like a therapeutic alliance. Both of you are working together to get the best possible outcome with your back or neck pain treatment.
When spinal pain strikes, you should visit your doctor right away to get an accurate diagnosis and to start the right treatment. If surgery is recommended for your spinal pain or sciatica, you should take time to learn about different spine doctors in NJ and what sets them apart from one another. By finding the right doctor for you, you can be sure to have a successful outcome and get back to your normal lifestyle quickly and safely.