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Thread: CHOP or Penn State (Philly/Baltimore area)

  1. #1
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    CHOP or Penn State (Philly/Baltimore area)

    Hi. Anyone used CHOP (Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia) or Penn State in Hershey for surgery? If so, I'd like to hear your feedback regarding your experience. Also- if you've used any other providers in the area (Hopkins, Jefferson, etc) -- that would be good to hear about too.

    thanks,
    -Rich

  2. #2
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    Hi Rich...

    I moved this to the physician/hospital feedback forum as I thought you might get more exposure.

    --Linda

  3. #3
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    Hi Rich,

    If you do a search on CHOP, you should find some responses. I know one woman in particular who took her daughter there for surgery, but she doesn't come to the forum anymore. I think she was pleased with her experience.

    As for Hershey, my daughter, Jamie, had her surgery done there 5 1/2 years ago by Dr. Lee Segal. I'm sorry to say that Dr. Segal is no longer in PA though. Feel free to ask any questions you have about our experience.

    Jamie and I also run a Scoliosis Support Group through the Penn State Children's Hospital in Hershey.

    Another option is the Shriner's Hospital in Philly. Maria (Hi Maria!) on this forum can give you a GREAT recommendation on Shriner's of Philly.

    Mary Lou
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

  4. #4
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    Hi, Rich.

    I spoke with a woman over the summer whose son had his surgery done at CHOP. I forget the surgeon's name, but they were pleased with his outcome.
    The only drawback she said was that she wasn't given a lot of information about the surgery and such as walking for exercise after surgery and simple stuff like that. She said her son did develop a blood clot which they had to get corrected.

    I don't know your locale, but if you are looking down by Hopkins, you might also consider Georgetown in DC.

    Our dd had her surgery there last fall with Dr. William Lauerman and we couldn't be more pleased.

    Regardless of whichever doctor you decide to have the surgery with, do as much research on your own about the surgery, post-op care and such.

    This group is great and was a real Godsend for our family.

    Good luck to you!

  5. #5
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    Reading, PA
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    I personally have never gone to CHOP or Hershey, but when I was younger I was sent to Du Pont (no surgery though). They were wonderful. Also, one of my coworkers took their daughter there to have her surgery when she was 12. He can not speak more highly of the doctors and staff there.
    Tiffany K
    I'm not short, I'm fun size!

    29 years old
    4'11", never braced
    Pre-surgery, 52 T6 to T12, 35 T12 to L4
    T1-L2, Posterior 8/5/2010, gained 1"

    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?ai...9&l=03212f3e17

  6. #6
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    I am interested in these replies as I'm in Central PA myself and if possible would prefer to have surgery closer than New York City (the only surgeons I've spoken to so far),

    However, I was disappointed to see everyone was only speaking of pediatric scoliosis surgeons. Makes sense as evidently that's what the poster sought, but naturally that wouldn't apply to me. Does anyone have any experience with surgeons in this general area who work on adult (kypho-)scoliosis?

    I was disconcerted to note the recommendation to see a surgeon in Georgetown rather than anyone at Johns Hopkins (if one were in the JHU area). Is JHO not on the recommended provider list here - at least per personal experience? I know Ziva Gokaslan, a scoliosis specialist , is there. Maybe no one mentioned him as he doesn't accept many (if any) insurance plans. Can't believe JHU doesn't have anyone to recommend, though! (Although it's out of state, it's the same distance from me as Philadelphia or Pittsburgh).

    Please note, if piggy-backing on another thread is frowned upon, kindly let me know! It will surely apply to other threads too. Here, I just couldn't see posting an identical question, except for specifying I was looking for a surgeon who does adult deformity correction (but maybe I should have started a new thread!)

    Thanks for any advice.

    PS Oops, I want to add Geisinger (Danville PA) to the list considered.
    Last edited by Back-out; 04-24-2010 at 11:53 PM. Reason: forgot to add something

  7. #7
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    The reason why we picked Dr. Lauerman at Georgetown is that he is considered one of the top surgeons on the East Coast, and we didn't feel like going as far as NY either.

    He also deals with adult scoliosis, so as my dd will be in that category soon, we were hoping to find someone who could continue to follow her beyond adolesence. Hopefully, she won't need more surgery, but if she does and remains in the area, he's there.

    Also, Dr. Lauerman was the one with whom my dd felt most comfortable after we did our consults (and we got 3 opinions).

    And after all, it was her back.

    Feel free to PM me if you'd like to chat sometime.

    HTH,
    Marian

  8. #8
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    Hi Rich,

    As Mary Lou mentioned (Hi Mary Lou!), I've had a great experience at Shriners Philly. My son has been under the care of Dr. Betz and his team since 2003 (he had surgery in 2004) and the care has been superb.

    We live in NYC (and are fortunate enough to have decent insurance) but we continue to travel to Philly strictly because of the high quality care my son has received and continues to receive.

    Best of luck to you!
    mariaf305@yahoo.com
    Mom to David, age 17, braced June 2000 to March 2004
    Vertebral Body Stapling 3/10/04 for 40 degree curve (currently mid 20's)

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/ScoliosisTethering/

    http://pediatricspinefoundation.org/

  9. #9
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    PMSmom - thanks very much for the explanation and the kind offer!

    I've interested in seeing two surgeons in Philly - wish I could think of their names now. I'd love to get feedback. They do adult deformity patients - either only adult or both pediatric and adult.

    Will check in once I find the names. Especially living alone, I'm worried at the thought of having my surgery even as far an NYC. What if I have a complication?

    As I mentioned elsewhere, transportation from where I live is awful. Philly would be only one bus ride. with a single change. I'd still have to stay in a hotel to go to an appt but it would be easier and cheaper to get to and fro compared to NYC.

  10. #10
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    Feb 2010
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    Reading, PA
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    Back-out, have you tried Dr. Vora at Hershey? I know earlier I mentioned not having gone to Hershey before, but I ended up doing a third opinion last week there. Dr. Vora does both pediatrics and adults. He was wonderful!
    Tiffany K
    I'm not short, I'm fun size!

    29 years old
    4'11", never braced
    Pre-surgery, 52 T6 to T12, 35 T12 to L4
    T1-L2, Posterior 8/5/2010, gained 1"

    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?ai...9&l=03212f3e17

  11. #11
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    PA
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    Tiffany, No, I was under the impression there was no one at Hershey who was on the NSF list, and I have been referring to that kind of like a Bible.

    Will check (I've been known to be wrong! ) Has he operated on anyone in your family?

    Thank you.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by TiffanyK View Post
    Back-out, have you tried Dr. Vora at Hershey? I know earlier I mentioned not having gone to Hershey before, but I ended up doing a third opinion last week there. Dr. Vora does both pediatrics and adults. He was wonderful!
    Tiffany,

    I'd love to hear more about your experience with Dr.Vora. I've spoken to a few people who've also seen Dr.Vora and feel the same way as you do! I haven't met him personally, but I've had contact with him and he was great to work with. My daughter and I run a Scoliosis Support group out of Hershey Medical Center, so hearing anyone's experience--good or bad--with a surgeon is always appreciated.


    Thanks,
    Mary Lou
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Back-out View Post
    Tiffany, No, I was under the impression there was no one at Hershey who was on the NSF list, and I have been referring to that kind of like a Bible.

    Will check (I've been known to be wrong! ) Has he operated on anyone in your family?

    Thank you.

    As you know from past personal experience, Hershey is the hospital where the sickest and most severely injured are taken (as well as those that need a specialist). Hershey deals with big issues like spinal fusion, cancer, trauma, etc. every day and in my opinion, they have some of the best doctors in our area.

    Three of the five opinions my daughter had came from Hershey.
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

  14. #14
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    Feb 2010
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    Reading, PA
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    Back-out:

    Dr. Vora is not listed on NSF/SRS, but is on SpineUniverse. No, he has not operated on anyone in my family. But, I have my surgery scheduled with him on Aug. 5th.

    Mary Lou:

    I've only seen Dr. Vora once so far. I also saw his assistant, Glenn Miller. Both were very patient and answered all my questions. They were very thorough with the x-rays, exam, and my complete scoliosis history. I felt like I told them my life story and that they actually cared! I'll post more updates on my experience as go through surgery and recovery. However, that won't be until August... feels like forever away.
    Tiffany K
    I'm not short, I'm fun size!

    29 years old
    4'11", never braced
    Pre-surgery, 52 T6 to T12, 35 T12 to L4
    T1-L2, Posterior 8/5/2010, gained 1"

    http://www.facebook.com/album.php?ai...9&l=03212f3e17

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    PA
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    Thanks Tiffany. Good luck with your surgery.

    Mary Lou
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

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