Experts Speak

“Do Not Ignore Back Pain” – Dr Y Madhav, Orthopedic Consultant

Hi, I am Dr Madhav Yendru, Consultant Orthopedic Surgeon, Specialist in Spine and Muscular Skeletal Oncology at CARE Hospitals, Hi-tech.

Now to make sure that your spine problem does not become chronic and does not end up having to be treated by surgery what is the care that we can take? First of all, do not ignore any back ache or neck pain that you have, because the answers to the problem can be quite easy when the patient comes to us in the early stages. If the patient comes late, the condition becomes chronic and sometimes it’s irreversible, so we have to end up doing surgery. But for 95% of the people it is just postural control, change of lifestyle, ergonomics, physiotherapy and a little medication or sometimes a few injections that can just get them out of the pain. And even for people who actually do undergo surgery, the condition is not like before … where people used to have to take bed rest for a prolonged period of time and they could not walk and there were dangers always of dural tears and leaks and loss of function in one or more limbs.

Now with the advent of latest technology all this doesn’t happen. Spine surgery has become very safe, very effective. We always make our patients walk the same day or the very next day after the surgery.

hat do people with a bone tumor do? What they do now is totally different from what they did in the past. The treatment usually consisted of amputation because limb salvage was out of the question and even after amputation there was no guarantee that the person would live. And bone tumors usually occur more in children than in adults, the primary bone tumors. Adults only have secondary bone tumors. So, previously, we did not have MRI, we did not have proper CT scans, we did not have proper drugs to take care of the tumor and to control the spread of the tumor throughout the body.

So amputation was probably the only method available for orthopedic surgeons to save the life of the person. But now we have enough technology, enough drugs, enough investigative modalities which help us to exactly delineate the tumor, know the spread and we can control it by the medications available. And now bone tumors are treated by local excision of the tumors and we salvage the limb. We can either excise the tumor locally and put the bone back after irradiation of the bone so that it forms a natural part of the body again.

Also available to us are tumor implants which can substitute the joint and the function of the bone and the patient can walk normally. And, after all this the longevity of the patient is also increased, thanks to the radiation and chemo therapy that we have at our disposal.

 

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