View Full Version : opinions & results

03-08-2010, 08:50 PM
i finally called the 2 patients of dr anand's in CA who had surgery with him...both had lower lumbar surgery....
both women i spoke to were very very kind & spoke for a long time..they both raved about the surgery & dr anand...
both are doing very well now...no pain...all recovered...both were older....one early 60's,
one early 70's...i was a little bit surprised that they didnt really know the size of their curves at time of surgery....the younger woman said she thought her lower curve was in the 30's....both say their backs look straight now..they both wore braces for some months after surgery...both say they are fully fused now...one used a bone stimulator...
both are back to full activities, and were able to do so fairly quickly!

i do know that when i met with dr anand, he said a large curve was still appropriate for his method of surgery....

soooo...it appears that dr anand accepts blue cross/blue shield/anthem..and medicare....i dont even know if i can get blue cross during the change period that comes up in the fall...i also want to see if any doctors in nyc or elsewhere on east coast start using the procedure...but i know it sounds nice not to cut thru muscle...and not to have a whole lotta blood loss...and not to have a whole
lotta pain!

we will see what happens on the east coast...i do believe that in the future, all methods of surgery will improve...it has happened in heart surgery...it will happen in other kinds of surgery...we shall see what develops with scoli surgery...


03-08-2010, 08:52 PM
That is a good contribution to the group, Jess.

It really sounds hopeful.

03-08-2010, 09:15 PM

Surgical techniques definitely advance and improve over time: I'm glad I didn't elect surgery even 10 years earlier (although plenty of people who did are doing fine). We all like to take comfort in current technology, I think. :)

I hope you know I'm supportive of your quest, but I *am* a little concerned (the word you used was "surprised") that the women don't know their pre-op measurements. Do people really go in *that* blind in this day and age?

That fact, as small as it may be, raises a little red flag (in my little, suspicious head) about the correlation of their experiences to what yours might be. You really have to be sure you're comparing apples to apples, you know?

Also, how long ago were they fused (to know they are truly "fully fused")?

Not meaning to rain on your parade ... promise. I just want to see you get the most effective treatment on the first pass.


03-09-2010, 12:31 AM
Thanks for the concern...Sharon & Pam...it is truly appreciated!

both of the patients i spoke to are 2 years out and fused......the 2nd one, the one who is 61 & said she used a bone stimulator, was told that she is totally fused...she needed another surgery cause a screw came loose...she said she is thin...& dr anand went in and removed the screw & cut the rods down....said she is totally fused...

i am going to see my doctor in nyc april 12th & talk to him about all this...but i know that mis-information abounds! the ladies in CA were told that if they had the traditional surgery, they would have been in the hospital for a month or two...i informed them that was not true...that they would have been out within a week, barring any complications...

but on the other side, i know that people are told that the newer method is not right for them cause their curve is too low or too large...and according to dr anand, that is not the case at all...he states that there are no curves too low or large for the method...soooo..i think there are opinions on both sides of this coin that are inaccurate...

we will see what time brings...

thanks again for the concerns for me...& your kindnesses! it truly means alot!!


03-09-2010, 09:29 AM
the ladies in CA were told that if they had the traditional surgery, they would have been in the hospital for a month or two...

Who told them that? Dr. Anand? If so, I would steer clear from this surgeon.

03-09-2010, 11:28 AM
That is why i titled the thread "opinions & results"....cause i think there is mis-information on both sides...what about telling people the newer method wont work for low or large curves, when that is not true...?

i dont like any mis-leading or mis-information on anybody's part...

i am not in dr anand's corner...but i believe fair on one side is fair on all sides....


03-09-2010, 04:37 PM
Hi Jess. It's all very interesting. It's a shame there's so much misinformation surrounding this surgery because it makes one suspicious. But one thing's for sure, this surgery that many of us have had in recent years will eventually be obsolete and I hope it does, because obviously it's going to become less complicated, less painful etc. for future patients.

I now look forward to hearing how your appt. on April 12 goes.

03-09-2010, 05:56 PM
Hey Jess,

Sounds good, no cutting through muscle!! I'm using a bone stimulator as we speak and can't tell if these thing even works, or is just a way to bill my insurance extra money. I went to L5 instead of S1 and I can't wait for new technology which will just zap you with a lazer and straighten out your spine in five minutes out patient surgery.


03-09-2010, 06:13 PM
Hey Jen.........thanks for the reply...the 2nd woman i spoke to, the one who is 61, also had degenerative disc disease, as do i....anyway, she seemed a little more knowledgeable about her curves than the first one i spoke to, who was 72 years old...

Rich...great idea! laser zapping...that would be terrific! i wish we could see far into the future...in 50 years or 75.......how advanced all surgeries will become....for now, i am just going to see what my nyc surgeon has to say when i see him april 12th...


Tall Paul
03-10-2010, 09:39 PM
Hi Jess,

Thanks for contacting these patients. Here is recent article regarding Dr. Anand. http://www.ivanhoe.com/channels/p_channelstory.cfm?storyid=23712&channelid=CHAN-100014

03-10-2010, 10:21 PM
Hi Paul
thanks so much for that link...i was given several articles plus one study to read about dr anand's work by his staff...but no mention of that orthopedics site...so thank you...it is really interesting & full of information...i hope others take a look as well!

best of luck in your decision...

03-10-2010, 10:24 PM
"...the reported complication rates of adult scoliosis surgery is anywhere from 50 to 70 percent."

I don't think that's accurate. Would love to know where he got that "data", and what constitutes a "complication". A 20% variance seems a bit broad to be based on fact.

I'm all for lesser invasive techniques (providing they're effective), but personally, I'm turned off by the use of what feels a lot like a scare tactic.


03-10-2010, 10:56 PM
Hi Pam
yes, i dont know where those figures came from, either...
i think there is so much mis-information on all sides...that is why i titled the thread "opinions and results"...cause people on both sides of the less invasive aisle are hearing things that are not quite accurate...that is, if you listen to both kinds of scoli surgeons...

this must have been written a few years ago, as far as the total number of patients...he told me in january of this year that he has had 92 patients in a little over 4 years...also, the patient i spoke to, age 61, told me that she had another surgery to remove a screw & cut rods, and was fine after that...it was needed due to screw coming out...but she recovered from that "lesser surgery" (her words) well...that patient wasnt mentioned in this interview...

i am interested in all new surgeries...i lost someone very close in 1983...and i know how much that surgery (cancer) has progressed since then...i feel bad that all patients cant benefit from new advances in all the surgical areas!


03-11-2010, 09:12 PM
I noted the 50-70% rate of complication in older patients too. I surely hope that's not the case! I'll never get up the nerve to have the surgery if it is.:eek:

03-11-2010, 09:33 PM
That has to include some pretty minor complications. The risk of a *serious* complication is very, very low.

03-12-2010, 12:31 PM
i dont believe those numbers....I dont know where they came from or how they were compiled....

what i found interesting was the method...& how it can prevent muscle cutting, cause little bleeding, etc...


Tall Paul
03-12-2010, 11:20 PM
Interesting article just published regarding this surgery.

The following comment pulled from page 7 of the article really surprised me:

"Additionally, no pseudarthrosis at L5–S1 was seen, and no sacral stress fractures or sacral screw loosening were noted. Patients did not receive instrumentation to the ilium. Longer-term follow-up will address the issue of whether techniques such as the ones described by us may obviate the need for iliac bolts."

I always thought long fusions (I am defining long as T10 or T12 to sacrum) required fixation to the iliam. Why would type of fusion not require them?

03-13-2010, 02:32 AM
dr anand told me that, though regular surgery says i will have fusion L4-S1 & T11-sacrum, with bilateral pelvic fixation, that with his method, i would not need "bilaterl pelvic fixation" ...he said that is a benefit of his method...which sounded good to me....his follow ups are over 4 years old now...so that is the oldest results he can now report...the first interview referenced is after 32 patients...he now has 92....no reported revisions except for screws that pulled out on one woman i spoke to...she had screw removed and rods cut down...and at that point, she was fully fused...

this latest article is more interesting to me, since it is more recent....

i guess time will tell, cause 4 and a half years isnt alot compared to other kinds of surgeries & rod insertions...

but progress will happen...that is the way of all surgerical history in this country and around the world!


Tall Paul
03-13-2010, 09:18 AM

I guess if Dr Anand can get fusion without use of iliac screws that is great, but I remember reading somewhere that in addition to aiding in fusion, the fixation to the ilium preserves the wear on the SI joints. So in a long fusion the segment fused is supported by both the sacrum and the ilium. But I also know many people get their iliac bolts removed once fusion has set in. Has anyone who had iliac bolts removed on a long fusion has trouble with their SI joints?

03-13-2010, 12:44 PM
I have some of the longest iliac screws out there. They drive right through the sacrum and down almost to my hips. My hips were sore in my recovery, but now they are fine. I wonder if my SI joints are now fused? They probably are.
Well, I guess the acceptable "scare tactic" analogy would be that I was "carpet bombed" and had JDAMs driven into my hips....Glad I wasnít nuked. Carpet bombing is truly effective in scaring people. Now thatís 100% guaranteed.


Funny how greed dictates marketing techniques.........

Other than that, I support these new methods.

03-13-2010, 01:15 PM
Before I settled on Dr. Rand for my surgery I saw 4 other docs. One of them in NY, not known for scoli surgery was unbelievable. He told me that because of my age, which at the time was 57 and because I had had 2 previous back surgeries, one being a 3 level fusion, I was really at risk for major problems and especially at risk for a major infection. He didn't give me percentages or anything, but in retrospect, he clearly could not and did not want to do the surgery and that's how he handled it. His suggestion was to fuse the s1 level and see if that fixed everything. That was $350 worth of bull and barely a thank you. He was out of network and highly regarded by someone with major back stuff but not scoliosis. I am so glad that I just disregarded him immediately and that was that. He was trying to scare me but why other than he didn't have the nerve to admit he did not do that kind of surgery. He's a big deal in the artificial disk community and the way my spine disintegrates that was not an option. Anyway, just wanted to add my 3 cents.

03-13-2010, 05:20 PM
all i can say about meeting in person with dr anand for consult was that, up close & in person, he never tried to scare me out of or into anything...he just listed the pluses of his method...