Tracking Back Pain
Reported May 2011
ATLANTA (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Ever have a nagging pain in your back that just won’t go away? Twenty–six million Americans suffer from frequent back pain. It’s the leading cause of disability in Americans under 45. But sometimes, one of the biggest challenges is just figuring out where the pain is coming from. A new device could help doctors detect back pain right at the source.
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Robin Fernandez loves her dogs, but for more than two years, she couldn’t walk, bend or throw a ball without pain from degenerative disc disease.
“I couldn’t walk I couldn’t go very far. I couldn’t take my dog for a walk around the block,” Robin Fernandez, Back pain sufferer, told Ivanhoe.
Her little friend Page had serious back problems too.
“She couldn’t walk either so we were kind of in the same boat,” Fernandez added.
Before Fernandez had surgery, her spinal surgeon wanted to take a look at her back with a new kind of X-ray.
“It would be like live shots of how my back moved,” Fernandez explained.
Fernandez and another patient, Rudy Portillo, were part of a clinical trial at Florida Orthopedic Institute, testing the KineGraph vertebral motion analyzer or VMA.
While on a moving platform, the system takes live, real time, moving X-rays of the spine using a fluoroscope to help identify where the spine is moving abnormally.
The machine tracks motion patterns, recording abnormalities on a graph. “Once you understand how the motion occurs then you’re able to determine which type of motion preservation device you can utilize best for that patient,” Antonio Castellvi, M.D., Spine Surgeon at Florida Orthopedic Institute told Ivanhoe.
Now that both Fernandez and Page have had back surgery to fix their problems, life is a lot more active.
“She doesn’t walk as far as I do, but yes we’re both able to walk and get around fine,” Fernandez said.
The two friends are happy to be up and on their way. The goal is to help diagnose back problems more accurately, and use motion analysis to tailor treatment protocols to each patient’s specific needs, from physical therapy or surgery.
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Florida Orthopedic Institute
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