- Virtual Spine Consultation
- Patient Reported Outcomes
- Patient Forms
- Common Procedures
- Common Diagnoses
Virtual Spine Consultation
Dr. Dick offers the option of reviewing your imaging studies (x-ray, MRI and or CT scans) and discussing your case via video conference or telephone to help you determine if you are a surgical candidate and what you could expect your outcome to be. Patients who do not live in the Twin Cities Metropolitan area or are seeking a second opinion often find this an attractive first contact. Patients who decide that they would like to pursue surgery with him, will require an in person appointment. There is a $99 charge for this service that is not covered by insurance, and patients can conveniently pay using a credit card. Virtual Spine Consultations typically take about 15 minutes.
Click on the link below to conveniently process the $99 payment online via credit card for your Virtual Spine Consultation. Note: Please enter “999999” in the “Acct #” required field of the online form.
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Please print a Spine Consultation Request Form and the appropriate Cervical or Lumbar Pre Treatment Form/s, fill them out and mail to us or scan and email them back to Dr. Dick’s Care Coordinator, Tierney, at [email protected] or fax the forms to us at: 952 456-7850. Click the appropriate link below to open a PDF.
Patient Reported Outcomes
Dr. Dick proudly shares his patient reported outcome data for common spinal procedures. The outcomes of particular surgical procedures can vary depending on the surgeon. Most patients who are considering a surgical procedure find it helpful to see the outcomes of other patients who had the procedure.
Click the link below to print the form for scanning or mailing.
The Patient Intake Form can be printed and filled out. Upon completion, please mail or scan and send to us using the form on our Contact & Locations page.
This is a minimally invasive procedure done to relieve pressure on a nerve caused by a piece of herniated disc material or bone spur in the neck. This is done through a small incision in the back of the neck. A hole is made through the bone that covers the spinal canal in order to remove the piece of herniated disc or bone spur from where it is compressing the nerve.
Cervical Disc Replacement (CDR)
A man-made prosthesis is inserted between two cervical vertebrae after the disc has been surgically removed in the process of decompressing the spinal cord or a nerve root. This is an attractive alternative to a fusion operation because it preserves motion at the disc space. It is done through a small incision in the front of the neck. This procedure can be done through the EXCEL Program at substantial cost savings.
Anterior Cervical Discectomy & Fusion (ACDF)
This is an operation that causes two vertebrae in the neck to grow together into one solid bone. It is performed when the disc has to be removed to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerve roots. It is typically accomplished by using titanium implant and the patient’s own bone (autograft) or donated bone (allograft). It is done in situations where the disc is too degenerated to do a cervical disc replacement. It is done through a small incision in the front of the neck. This procedure can be done through the EXCEL Program at substantial cost savings.
Anterior Cervical Corpectomy & Fusion (ACCF)
This procedure is performed in situations that require a more extensive decompression of the spinal cord or nerve roots than can be accomplished with an ACDF or has more than one disc that is painful or unstable. In this procedure, Dr. Dick removes an entire vertebral body, saves the bone and uses it along with a structural prosthesis and titanium plate and screws, to accomplish a fusion across more than one disc. It is done through a small incision in the front of the neck.
In this procedure, the spinal canal is enlarged by changing the shape of the lamina using small titanium plates and screws. No fusion is required and motion is spared. This procedure is done to avoid fusion in select patients who require an extensive decompression of their spinal cord and or nerve roots. It is done through a vertical incision in the back of the neck. This procedure can be done through the EXCEL Program at substantial cost savings.
This is a minimally invasive procedure done to relieve pressure on a nerve caused by a piece of herniated disc material in the low back. It is usually done as an outpatient through a small incision. Dr. Dick offers his patients the option of going completely to sleep (general anesthesia) or staying awake with sedation and local anesthesia.
A lumbar laminectomy is required to relieve pressure on nerves in the low back caused by bone spurs and/or degenerative soft tissue. In this procedure, all or part (hemilaminectomy) of the back of the spinal canal is removed. If the surgery involves only one level, it can also be done as an outpatient and under local anesthesia. If it needs to be done at multiple levels it can be done through the EXCEL Program at substantial cost savings.
Posterior Spinal Fusion (PSF)
Spinal fusion means making the individual segments of the spine (vertebrae) grow together. It is typically accomplished using bone graft, screws, rods or plates to hold the vertebral segments in the desired position. Spinal fusion is used to treat deformities, Scoliosis, Kyphosis or Spondylolisthesis and when the spine is rendered unstable by degeneration or fracture. Posterior means that the incision is made in the back of the patient’s neck, chest or back as these conditions can also be treated from the front (Anterior).
Anterior Spinal Fusion (ASF)
Spinal fusion means making the individual segments of the spine (vertebrae) grow together. It is typically accomplished using bone graft, screws, rods or plates to hold the vertebral segments in the desired position. Spinal fusion is used to treat deformities, Scoliosis, Kyphosis or Spondylolisthesis and when the spine is rendered unstable by degeneration or fracture. Anterior means that the incision is made in the front of the neck, chest or abdomen as these conditions can also be treated from the back (Posterior).
Cervical Disc Herniations
Discs are rubbery cushions between each vertebra. When a disc herniates a portion of it squeezes out into the spinal canal and puts pressure on an individual nerve or the spinal cord. When this occurs in the neck it can cause pain, numbness, incoordination and weakness in the patient’s shoulders, arms and hands. This typically happens on only one side, left or right, but it can affect both.
Cervical myelopathy refers to the compression of the spinal cord in the neck that compromises its function. Common symptoms include numbness, incoordination, weakness and sometimes electrical sensations that affect both the arms and the legs.
Lumbar Disc Herniations
Discs are rubbery cushions between each vertebra. When a disc herniates, a portion of it squeezes out into the spinal canal and causes pressure on a nerve. When this occurs in the low back it can cause pain, numbness, incoordination and weakness in the patient’s buttocks and legs. This typically happens on only one side, left or right, but it can affect both.
Lumbar Spinal Stenosis
Lumbar spinal stenosis is a condition where the space for the nerves in the low back becomes tight from the growth of bone spurs, bulging discs and enlarged ligaments. This is usually a gradual degenerative process associated with aging but some patients are born with a small spinal canal and develop symptoms at an earlier age. Typical symptoms involve pain in the back and/or legs that is present with standing and walking but relieved by sitting or leaning forward.
Spondylolisthesis is a Latin word that describes a condition where one vertebra slides forward on the one below it. It occurs when the facet joints in the back of the spine degenerate to the point that they can no longer resist the forces of gravity and the vertebra shifts forward. It is one of the causes of spinal stenosis because the space for the nerves in the spinal canal is compromised when one vertebra shifts on another.
Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis
Scoliosis is a Latin word that means the spine is curved to the side and Idiopathic means we don’t know the exact causes. Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis occurs when the spine twists and curves during adolescence, the most rapid time of growth. When a teenager is still growing, a custom-made brace can keep the curve from getting any worse. Curves that are kept below 45 degrees typically don’t progress after growth stops. Curves that are larger than 45 degrees typically progress throughout life and for that reason are treated with a Spinal Fusion surgery.
Scoliosis is a Latin word that means the spine is curved to the side. Degenerative scoliosis occurs later in life when the spine wears out more on one side than the other. In most situations, this type of scoliosis can be managed non-operatively but in more severe cases, where the spine is unstable or the nerves become compressed, surgery may be necessary.
Kyphosis is a Latin word that means the spine is curved forward. It occurs most commonly in the upper back and neck but can occur in the lower back as well. It can be caused by degeneration of the discs, multiple fractures involving the front part of the vertebra or in children when the front of the spine doesn’t grow as quickly as the back. When this occurs in adolescents it is known as Scheuermann’s Kyphosis.
Copyright 2015. Jeffrey C. Dick, MD. All Rights Reserved.