Orthopaedic Specialties

Spine

Many demands are placed on your spine. It holds up your head, shoulders, and upper body. It gives you support to stand up straight, and gives you flexibility to bend and twist. It also protects your spinal cord.

Like any bones in your body, the bones in your spine, called vertebrae, can be compromised by arthritis or osteoporosis. Your vertebrae connect to create a protective canal for the spinal cord. Between your vertebrae are small joints with cartilage that help your spine move. If the cartilage is eroded and joint inflammation results, this gives rise to back or neck pain and may limit movement. This may need to be remedied by surgery.

Spinal fusion is one of the most common surgeries done in the neck or back. It essentially involves welding together the compromised vertebrae so that they heal into a single, solid bone, allowing for renewed flexibility.

Artificial disk replacement is a newer surgical procedure for relieving low back pain. Similar to hip or knee joint replacements, disk replacement substitutes are mechanical devices that simulate spinal function. Your doctor or surgeon will discuss treatment options with you.

ASOS supports the family doctor–patient relationship. If you have any symptoms that might require treatment, consult your GP, who will refer you to an appropriate orthopaedic specialist.