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Thread: surgeons in MA, new to forum

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    4

    surgeons in MA, new to forum

    Hi, I'm new to the forum. My daughter is 18 and we were recently told she needs surgery. We have been hoping to avoid surgery but her curve has progressed to a Cobb right thoracic 62 degrees. Fusion is recommended from T1 to L1. We are looking for spinal specialists in Massachusetts. Insurance company has denied Dr.Emans at Boston Childrens. We were told of Dr. Mortimer at UMASS Medical, however he is not on the scoliosis foundation of spinal specialists and less than 50% of his practice is spinal surgery, we are not sure how much of that is scoliosis surgery. We want to use a spinal deformity specialist instead of a general orthopedic surgeon as our insurance is directing us. At 18, has anyone used an adult scoliosis surgeon? Also can anyone who has had a similar fusion tell me about your limitations and any loss of mobility. I am also curious about what happens to the ribs after the surgery, is there significant pain as a result of the straightened spine? So glad we have found this site, so many questions already answered.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    1,160
    Hi there,

    I would fight your insurance company tooth and nail to get your daughter a spinal deformity specialist. I would never allow a general ortho to do such an important surgery on my child. Period. An adult scoliosis specialist may well be fine, as long as they are SRS (or SRS qualified) and devote their practice to spinal deformity surgery.

    I would fight for Dr Emans or his partner Dr Hresko. Dr Hresko did a very successful surgery on the son of a family I know, and they speak very highly of him.

    Good luck, and don't give up.
    Gayle, age 49
    Oct 2010 fusion T8-sacrum w/ pelvic fixation
    Feb 2012 lumbar revision for broken rods @ L2-3-4
    Sept 2015 major lumbar A/P revision for broken rods @ L5-S1


    mom of Leah, 15 y/o, Diagnosed '08 with 26* T JIS (age 6)
    5/10 VBS Dr Luhmann Shriners St Louis
    5/16 6 yrs post-op, 24*T/ 22* L, mild increase in curves, watching

    also mom of Torrey, 12 y/o son, 16* T, stable

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    8,901
    I agree with Gayle.

    I don't get why they are denying you a spine specialist. I highly doubt the various flavors within orthopedic surgery have radically different costs. So I can't imagine why they are micromanaging your choice of surgeons.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    4

    insurance appeal

    We started the appeal process with the insurance company today. Luckily, Sarah's pediatrician is very involved and proactive and shares our decision to use only a SRS surgeon. We also have a friend whose daughter had a very positive surgical outcome with Dr. Emans. We all feel very comfortable with him as well as the hospital. Honestly,if the surgery is not nerve-racking enough we have to be held hostage by the insurance company! Has anyone else experienced this problem? Jacquie

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Ukiah CA
    Posts
    891
    I really hope your daughter get to see Dr Evans
    Kara
    25
    Brace 4-15-05-5-25-06
    Posterior Spinal Fusion 3-10-10
    T4-L2
    Before 50T
    After 20T

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