Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The "Wow!" Showing X-Rays of scoliosis correction surgery to family and patient.

One of the best parts of my job is getting a chance to share the
postoperative X-Rays with parents and with the scoliosis patients
after correcting their spinal deformity.
Yesterday we helped Claire from Virginia who had a severe double curve
scoliosis, and got a very nice correction.
The usual conference room where I meet with families after surgery was
being used, so we shared Claire's old and new "shape" next to each
other up against the window. Mom and dad and Claire's brother
definitely gave a big "Wow!".

Later in the day yesterday, I shared the X-Rays with Claire, as she
was recovering after surgery in her private room with mom and dad.
She looked up at the printout of her X-Rays, before and after, and
gave a very definite "WOW!", and a very broad, bright smile.
I also understand that she was "texting" her friends on her cell phone
within 2 hours of waking up from anesthesia!!
Since her surgery was just under 3 hours, that makes almost 5 full
hours when she was out of contact with friends!
Thankfully we have a free wireless network in the hospital, so she can
also email or IM friends from her room.


------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Monday, December 29, 2008

14 yo with 58/40 degree double curve scoliosis from Richmond, VA. Mon Dec 29 2008 Scoliosis Surgery w/ Dr. Hey

This morning we straightened up Claire, a 14 yo from Richmond
Virginia. She had a progressive double curve scoliosis with 58
degree lower curve, and 40 degree upper curve.
She came and saw me for a second opinion last month after she was
scheduled to have scoliosis surgery with fusion down to L5.
Bending films at Hey Clinic taken that day suggested that the lower
curve, although large, was nicely flexible at the base, so I was
hopeful we could spare her 3 rather than 1 lower disc spaces (a BIG
deal).

Her surgery went very well this morning.
Surgical Time: Start 0826, Finish 1120
Surgical Time: 2 hrs 54 minutes.
EBL: 600 cc
Cell Saver 250 cc
Blood Transfused: None.
Evoked Potentials: Normal Sensory and Motor.
Scoliosis Correction: Over 90%.
Postop Location: PACU, and then to Private Orthopaedic Room with
Parents, Duke Raleigh Hospital.
Predicted Hospital Length of Stay: Two Nights.

--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Smiles and great posture after complex anterior/posterior extension instrumentation and fusion.

I saw Leslie back last week.
She had MANY spine surgeries done elsewhere, including Dr. Grubb with
Grubb hardware.
Her story of her surgery is on earlier blogs.
Leslie had severe adjacent level failure, with very bad posture and
severe mpain.
Now she looks great!
Take care, Leslie, and thanks for letting us share our photo!
------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Friday, December 19, 2008

Encouraging story on NPR about prayer and teamwork at the hospital.

I heard this heart-warming story on NPR this morning, and found it really encouraging to hear about a woman who worked for 40 years in the surgical instrument room who would pray for each patient who would be needing those surgical instruments that day.  She understood that she played a crucial role on the overall team for the care of each patient, and that her gifts were being used to help bring healing.

Indeed, it takes a team effort to deliver highly effective care and for healing to occur.

Prayer is also something that is very important to many of our patients and families and team members.

This morning I saw a retired physician from Wilmington, NC who is considering spinal surgery.  He asked me if I pray with patients, and I told him that is something we do gently offer to patients and families who are interested.  

Take a listen to this NPR story, and let's all remember to thank even the members of the team who are not always directly helping at the point of care.  It takes the full team, both behind the scenes and "on-stage" to make it work.

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Fwd: thanTo the Hey Clinic,ks/happy holidays


From: FB
Date: December 17, 2008 4:49:59 PM EST
To: DR. HEY
Subject: thanTo the Hey Clinic,ks/happy holidays

To the Hey Clinic,

 

The receptionists, you're super   

 

The office staff you're great

 

The physicians assistants, outstanding

 

The surgeon, simply the best

 

The entire clinic really caring about their patients... PRICELESS.

 

Thanks to all at clinic;  HAPPY HOLIDAYS; see you in mid January


______________________ 
FB

--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS)  http://www.srs.org



Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Fwd: Update. Adult scoliosis surgery 10 years ago. Long term success a quuality of life.



-------------
Lloyd A.  Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA

Begin forwarded message:

From: Jane <@nc.rr.com>
Date: December 12, 2008 2:07:37 PM EST
To: dr. Hey
Subject: Update

My dear, dear Dr. Hey:
 
Ten years ago, on December 23, 1998, I entered the post op of Duke Medical Center with fear and trembling.  Not that I had a real choice; but after much dialogue and exploring other avenues to relieve my extreme back pain, you proposed a spinal fusion.  That was the wisest decision of my entire life because it took me from a possible life in a wheelchair to where I am today.  These past 10 years have been spent at our home on Kiawah Island, SC.   An occasional bout  with bursitis is about all I can recall during these years.  As of October of this year, we have moved to Chapel Hill, NC and both my husband and I feel this is the best place to spend the rest of our life.  I am now 78 years old and have the assurance that if my best friend, Dr. Lloyd Hey, is ever needed, he is there and waiting.  Thank you for all you have done, and I thank God you were given the ability to mend and heal those who are in such pain.  It is a true calling .
 
 
Jane
  

Monday, December 15, 2008

Today's Hey Clinic Scoliosis Surgery #2: 12 yo with thoracolumbar scoliosis

My second surgery today was a 12 yo girl, who had a progressive scoliosis and a large R rib hump.
She had a large compensatory lumbar curve that corrected very well with bending films.
We subsequently were able to correct her upper curve while sparing her lumbar spine for motion and activities.
Her surgery went very smoothly, and her curve was quite flexible (youth is a great thing!)
Surgical time was approximately 2 hrs 30 minutes.
She is in PACU, and will go to the orthopaedic floor to a private room to be with her parents.
Her parents will be seeing her in PACU as well shortly.
When her mom saw the postop X-Ray after surgery, she wept for joy!
What a great job.


Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh NC  USA

Hey Clinic Scoliosis Surgery Mon Dec 15 2008: 20 yo with severe thoracolumbar curve

This morning we helped John, a 20 yo tall college student who had a severe kyphoscoliosis with a 55 degree thoracolumbar curve, and severe hypokyphosis with actually thoracolumbar lordosis.  This hypokyphosis causes his chest to look “sunken in”, which also causes decreased lung volumes.

His surgery today went quite well, but was more difficult due to a relatively stiff curve, and thick paraspinal muscles combined with severe hypokyphosis, which made his spine “deeper” than usual, especially in the thoracic region.

I was able to successfully correct the curve with several osteotomies combined with segmental spinal correction using the rods and screws and special instruments called “Persuaders”.

He is doing well now up on the orthopaedic floor with his parents and girlfriend who is a very driven “premed”!

Dr. Lloyd A Hey
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS.org)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

22 yo young lady with painful progressive double curve scoliosis fixed today with neear 100% correction!

Today we helped Alex, a 22 yo woman who I have followed for a couple years with her painful double curve scoliosis.
She has spent the past 18 months in Sudan, Africa, and the pain has really gotten bad in the low back area.
Today I fixed her upper and lower curve T5-L3 at Duke Raleigh Hospital.
She did great during surgery.
Surgical time:  3 hours 14 minutes
Estimated Blood Loss (EBL):   725 cc.
Correction:  near 100%
Postop location:  Private Orthopaedic Floor Room, with family waiting.
Mom’s reaction when she saw the postop X-Ray with straight spine:  tears of joy.
I got a chance to show Alex her X-Ray as well.  Her reaction:  “Wow!!”

It is important to minimize the number of fused segments.  I used some preop bending X-Rays to determine that I could preserve the bottom 3 discs, which is much better for Alex in the long run.

I recently saw a similar curve in a 15 yo girl where they were planning to fuse to L5.  Similar bending films revealed that I could fix the curve with a shorter fusion, sparing 3 discs as opposed to only 1 disc.  This helps prevent adjacent level failure and maximizes flexibility.

Tomorrow we’ll get Alex up for her first walk.
She’ll be at least an inch and a half taller, and with a symmetric “hourglass figure.”
She’s planning to go back to Sudan in a couple of weeks, and get back to her important work.

Get well soon, Alex!

Dr. Lloyd Hey
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh NC  USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Hey Clinic Surgery: Monday Nov 18 '08: 20 yo man with severe kyphosis and scoliosis gets corrected

Yesterday morning, we straightened up Matthew, who is 20 years old with a near 90 degree Scheuermann’s Kyphosis.
His surgery took approximately 3 hours, and required no blood transfusions.
We used the cell saver as usual, in our laminar flow operating room.
I did several osteotomies to help with the correction, and used pedicle screw thoracic and lumbar instrumentation from T3-L2.
He has done well postoperatively, with some chest discomfort as his whole chest wall gets used to his dramatically improved shape!

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS.org)
http://www.srs.org

78 yo man from West Virginia 8 days after anterior/posterior spinal reconstruction tells his story


Smoot is 78 yo man from West Virginia that I did spinal stenosis and scoliosis surgery 8+ years ago at Duke Medical Center (DUMC).
He was basically non-ambulatory at that time due to his severe spinal problems. He did great after surgery, but over the past year has had increasing kyphosis, pain and trouble walking.
Eight days ago we straightened him up with an anterior L5S1 ALIF instrumentation and fusion, followed by posterior Lumbo-Sacral-Iliac Wing instrumentation and fusion with posterior osteotomies and lumbar laminectomy.
He has done great after surgery, now standing up straight, and walking very well.
He is flying off to Florida today with his friend's private jet from West Virginia.

This morning before he left, we got a nice team photo, and Smoot tells his story with a short video clip.

Get well soon, Smoot!

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS.org)

Monday, November 17, 2008

"Michigan Molly" Teenage Kyphosis Surgery update. FW: ? about Molly Ryan's limitations

Lysanne,
No problem with skiing!  Have fun!
Thanks for the great update.
Give our best to Molly and the whole family.
Dr. Hey
------ Forwarded Message
From: Lysanne
Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2008 20:33:22 -0800 (PST)
To: Lloyd Hey
Subject: ? about Molly Ryan's limitations

Hello all,

We hope you are all doing well down there.  We are freezing up here and the snow is falling and accumulating.

Which brings me to my question... Skiing.  Is this possible for Molly?  Her surgery for her 13 level fusion was July 17, 2008...to refresh your memories.  We are 4 months out right now.  Ski club forms need to be turned in and I am hesitant to pay for Molly as I am not confident it is safe for her yet.  We ususally start skiing around mid December.  She is an average downhill skier.  Doesn't take risks or jump jumps or race.  But still... let me know about this, if you can.

She is doing marvelously!  Looks great, feels great!  And you would never know she had the surgery except for her "zipperback" scar.  We call her Zippy sometimes!

I have attached two photos of her from the first day of school in September and a photo of her lounging in Gull Lake, one month post op!  

Thank you,

Lysanne




------ End of Forwarded Message

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Fwd: Update and photos. Scoliosis Revision Surgery Happy On Beach 6 weeks postop



From: Pauline <@yahoo.com>
Date: November 12, 2008 8:55:15 AM EST
To: "Dr. Lloyd Hey" <>
Subject: Update and photos

Dear Dr. Hey,
Hope all of Hey Clinic and Hey homestead are good this morning. We are having a wet, cloudy, and cold morning with promises of an even colder mornings for the next few days.
However, I am very grateful to be here, feeling great and very graciously thankful for such a wonderful and competent doctor and his staff.
I have been meaning to write this note for quite awhile, but it seems that each time I sit down to the computer I think of something that needs to be done in my household chores line!! I take pride in caring for my home. And, for the first time in quite awhile, I am able to do so. I cannot ever repay what you have done for me. You are the great enabler and a wonderful instrument in delivering the word of God as you diligently work to restore your patients to their fullest potential.
After we left your office on 10/23 (following my 6 weeks post op visit), we went the beach.
I walked on the beach and felt the sand under my bare feet, then I cautiously walked out to meet the waves. This was the first time since 1999 that I have felt confident and physically able enough to do this. This was one of my goals. To be able to feel the sand and water beneath my feet just filled me with over flowing Thanks to Our Maker and YOU. My hubby stood and held me while I cried tears of thankfulness and happiness. I just this minute realized I am crying as I write this! I am unable to tell family, friends and even total strangers how "how spiritual and competent my doctor is." Since my first visit to you at
"Big Duke" in December 2002, I knew I had found someone who was capable and willing to help me! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!
I hope these pictures turn out OK. The sea was quite turbulent the days we were there but this was also very beautiful.
We have so many blessings that it is impossible to list them all but I keep trying every day.
I will see you in December for my 3-month post op visit and I look forward to seeing all my extended family at Hey Clinic.
God Bless all of you.
Pauline A____ from West Virginia

------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Fwd: Adult Kyphosis Grateful Patient


From: Frances
Date: November 11, 2008 7:03:44 PM EST
To: Dr. Hey
Subject: Frances

Dear Dr. Hey,

If you recall, you corrected my nearly 90 kyphosis to a normal 4o degree curve on 10-30-08. I am now about 12 days post op and for the most part feeling quite well. I finally got to really take in my new ( and might I add totally awesome posture) and am both amazed by your skill and greatful to God for leading me into your gifted hands.

It's hard to thank you for such a wonderful gift of healing and there are no words to express my gratitude. Your staff is wonderful and a Brittany is a wonderfull PA and asset to your practice. Brittany has taken the time to calm my frayed nerves and reminded me what a huge procedure my body is healing from and all I need is time.

Thanks again for this life changiing surgery! If you took any photos, I would love to see them. In all my nerves prior to my surgery, I forgot to ask for some pics. The twenty years of medical assisiting have peaked my interest in how the surgery actually looked.

Also, please let your premed student know she can call or email me with any questions. Once I can get into a bathing suit, I will send a pic of my new, great posture.

With Deepest Gratitude,

Frances


------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org


Saturday, November 8, 2008

Daniel's Adolescent Scoliosis Surgery this Past Wednesday

This past Wednesday, we straightened up Daniel, who is 15 years old, and had a progressive idiopathic scoliosis.
He has a great family, and did great before, during and after surgery.
His surgery took a little less than 3 hours, with an excellent correction, and no blood transfusions.
We did his surgery in our special laminar flow room, with “moon suits.”
He looked great the first night, with his mom and dad staying with him in his private room @ Duke Raleigh Hospital.
He mobilized quickly the first day postoperatively, and went home straight and tall on postop day # 2.
We shot some video at his request in high definition for his high school research project / presentation.

Get well soon, Daniel!

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  USA

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Husband's assessment of his wife's adult scoliosis surgery





From:
djh >
Date: November 4, 2008 9:27:47 PM EST
To: "Dr. Hey" <h>
Subject: 3 months later
Reply-To: djh <t>

About 2 years ago we met with Dr. Hey for a consultation about Debra's Scoliosis. She's had back problems since she was young. In the last several years we had heard of more promising surgical procedures for Scoliosis. She frequently scanned the web for doctors who could do surgery on adult Scoliosis patients. She found a doctor and clinic who really excited her and requested information on their surgical procedures. The problem was they were well over 1500 miles away. I suggested she looked locally. Fortunately for us we found Dr. Hey and The Hey Clinic right in our back yard in Raleigh NC. about twenty miles from our home. After meeting with him we realized she had both Scoliosis and Kyphosis. Dr Hey also said she was a good candidate for surgery and would she a great improvement on her condition. At that point we were on board and she was VERY excited about actually getting some relief of her back problems. We had two obstacles to overcome. First ,Debra was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1998 and we were not sure if surgery was possible with her condition. Dr Hey and Debra's neurologist Dr. Freedman assured us that she could have the surgery. Second, Debra was about two years away in her job from getting extended sick leave which was an additional 3 months sick leave. Two years later July 28 2008 Debra had her surgery. She had an almost 6 hour surgery to correct both of her 50+ degree curves for her Scoliosis and Kyphosis. With her MS creating some difficulties of their own she decided to take 10 weeks off from her work. The first 4 weeks of recovery were challenging and slow going but the results of the surgery were and are amazing.She has grown over an inch and her 50 degree curves are now 17 degrees or less. Friday Oct 31st was the three month milestone and things are great. Although we are about 25% through the first year healing period, Debra already seems a 100% better. We hope this helps other people in making your decision. It is well worth it. Thanks to everyone at The Hey Clinic we will see you in three months. Debra and Matt

------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Nov 3 2008 Hey Clinic Surgery: 59 yo nurse manager with severe collapsing double curve

Yesterday, Monday November 3rd we helped a 59 yo woman, who works as a nurse manager for a hospital a few hours away who has a several hear history of severe progressive back pain.  She was only recently diagnosed with a severe scoliosis.  She likely had a smaller idiopathic scoliosis, but in her past 10 years or so, severe degenerative changes began to set in, causing disc and facet joint breakdown, and subsequent curve collapse with pain.  This is a good example of degenerative scoliosis on top of idiopathic scoliosis, becoming symptomatic later in life.

Her surgery went very well today.
Fusion levels:  T3-S1-Iliac Wing, with L5S1 L TLIF spacer w/ PEEK, and 2 lumbar osteotomies.
Surgical Time:  5 hrs 30 minutes.
Extubated in operating room, without difficulty.
Surgical correction:  Excellent. Approximately 80%.  Well balanced.  Excellent lumbar lordosis.  Humps gone.
Estimated Blood Loss:  1500 cc
Cell Saver Returned to Patient:  650 cc
Blood Transfused:  None.  Postop Hemoglobin 11.3
Evoked Sensory and Motor Function:  Normal.
Postop Check:  In good shape.  Family Very Thankful.  Local referring orthopaedic surgeon called me after surgery to get an update, and was also thankful.

Last week we “straightened up” a medical assistant for a surgery clinic who had a nearly 90 degree kyphosis.  The week before that we did a large scoliosis in a nurse from local hospital.  Tomorrow afternoon I am doing a thoracolumbar fusion on a retired nurse.  Lots of healthcare providers in need of straightening!


--------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society, SRS
http://www.srs.org

Monday, November 3, 2008

Pre-Med Student Experience watching Kyphosis Surgery Last week

On Thursday I had the privilege of shadowing Dr. Hey’s surgery on a 40 year old kyphosis patient.  As a pre-med student at NC State I was shocked to receive such an opportunity. My dream is to become a surgeon, and it is not often that a physician is patient enough to take an undergraduate student under their wing.  During the procedure I observed, Dr. Hey fused the abnormally curved area of the patient’s spine using titanium rods and screws.  I was amazed by the procedure, and being able to experience such an incredible thing first-hand has really changed my perceptions about my future.  
            Going into the surgery I had all but ruled out orthopedics as a career choice.  I was also beginning to question whether my lifelong dreams of going into the medical field were worth the cost of pursuing them. However, when I stepped into the operating room I realized two things that settled any and all doubts that I had about my career.  First, I began to comprehend how vastly this operation would improve the patient’s life.  I also recognized to a new degree how fascinatingly intricate the human body is.  Orthopedic medicine has a much greater impact on a patient than I had imagined, and the improvements that can be made in the quality of life have led me to consider this field much more intently.
            I would like to sincerely thank the patient and her family for allowing me to observe this surgery, because I ultimately could not have had this experience to learn and grow without their help. It was an honor to be able to witness this procedure, and I hope that the improvement in the patient’s life is as great as the difference this experience has made in mine.



-------------
LLOYD A HEY, MD MS
HEY CLINIC FOR SCOLIOSIS AND SPINE SURGERY
RALEIGH NC USA
HTTP://WWW.HEYCLINIC.COM
MEMBER, SCOLIOSIS RESEARCH SOCIETY (SRS)
HTTP://WWW.SRS.ORG

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Harrington Rod Flat Back Syndrome Success Story from Julie from South Carolina

Dear Dr. Hey,                                                       Oct.  2008

          I am sorry it has taken me so long to write to you, but I having been too busy enjoying life for the first time in 6 years. I no longer only see my feet and the ground for fear of falling down. Now, when I look outside I see the world because I’m not looking down anymore.
          You have not only given me my life back, but I have been a totally different person since I have returned from Raleigh. I am now a Christian as well as a normal person now. You truly are an instrument of God and exactly where you need to be in this world. You have no idea what you do for people. I have never been in the hospital and felt so calm and at peace than I was as with you as my Doctor. You prayed with me everyday and made sure that I knew that you and God were with me every step of the way. I thank you so much for that.
          My child is so excited because even now this close after a major surgery I can already be the mom he has never had. I am doing more, going more places, and I have never had so many complements from friends and family. I can’t wait to see what is to come for me, I’m very excited.
           I do realize I have a way to go but I feel like it just can’t get much better. My family will always be indebted to you forever and will always be here if you ever need anything. You will always be in my thoughts and prayers.
 
 
In His Name,
 
Julie
Wellford, S.C.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Pauline from West Virginia finds relief from sciatica with revision laminotomy after scoliosis surgery

Pauline from West Virginia developed some new sciatica long after a complex scoliosis correction.
I found that there was some new foraminal stenosis with some bone ingrowth into the L5 neural foramen that I found on a CT myelogram.
I took her back for surgery and did a revision foraminotomy, and she has done just great after surgery.  She brought plenty of sweets from West Virginia to share with the whole Hey Clinic staff!
So glad you are feeling better, Pauline!

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Pauline from West Virginia developed some new sciatica long after a complex scoliosis correction.
I found that there was some new foraminal stenosis with some bone ingrowth into the L5 neural foramen that I found on a CT myelogram.
I took her back for surgery and did a revision foraminotomy, and she has done just great after surgery.  She brought plenty of sweets from West Virginia to share with the whole Hey Clinic staff!
So glad you are feeling better, Pauline!

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  27609
Member, Scoliosis Research Society, http://www.srs.org

Rachel 3rd Grader, Interview w/ Dr. Hey

Over the years I have had the pleasure of being interviewed and sometimes filmed by local TV stations, the Discovery Channel, local newspapers, magazines and even the NY Times and Wall Street Journal.

But, to date, my favorite interview I have ever given happened yesterday when Rachel, age 8, came in to interview me for a school project for "Muscles and Bones."  She did just a great job!

Strong work, Rachel!
I hope you were able to pick up the DVD of your interview in clinic today to share with your class.
I'll try to import it and share it on this Blog and maybe even YouTube!
You asked great questions, and were very clear and poised.

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  27609
Member, Scoliosis Research Society, http://www.srs.org

17 yo postop scoliosis patient ready to play basketball

I saw Sandra and her dad for her 3 month follow-up postop scoliosis visit.  Her posture and incision look great, and she is doing great in school and at home.
I gave the the "AOK" to play basketball this fall and winter without restrictions.
Have a great season, Sandra!
You look great!

Take care and send us pictures from your season.

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  27609
Member, Scoliosis Research Society, http://www.srs.org

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Oct 14 Hey Clinic 13 yo Adolescent Scoliosis Surgery

Yesterday we helped Nykia, who is 13 yo with severe double curve.
Nykia's surgery took a little less than 4 hours.
She got a 90+% correction.
No blood transfusion.
She is doing well this morning, on orthopaedic floor.

--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, ScoliosResearch Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Re: Question from 7th Grader doing Scoliosis Project: What causes scoliosis?

Emily,
I am glad it was helpful!
Take care,
Dr. Hey

On Oct 14, 2008, at 7:41 PM, Emily  wrote:

Dear Dr. Hey,
    Thank you for all of the information. I greatly appreciate it. All of your facts answer every question that I need to know for my project. You helped me way more than the internet has these past few days. I will be sure to visit the website that you gave me. I know that with all of that information I am sure to get an A on my research project. I was really excited when I found out that we were doing projects on disabilities or dieseases. The first thing that came to my mind was Scoliosis.. Of course I asked my teacher if that was something she was looking for and she was excited when I told her that I had surgery this past summer. She even wants me to be in the school newspaper! I am also looking foward to my visit back to your office, I can't wait to hear what news you have for me this time. So far it has been good. I am happy to be playing ball on my full schedual again.
 
p.s. I totally understand all the homework issues. I can not stand all the homework our teachers give.
 
                                                                  Thank You,
                                                                              Emily
                                  

Monday, October 13, 2008

Question from 7th Grader doing Scoliosis Project: What causes scoliosis?

On 10/13/08 10:03 PM, "Emily " <> wrote:

Dear Dr. Hey,
    Hi, it's Emily __ again.  I hope you enjoyed the pictures I sent to you.  I am doing a project on scoliosis for my 7th grade class and I would like to ask you some questions on scoliosis.  My main question that I can not seem to figure out is, what is the main cause of scoliosis?  I figured why not ask an expert.  A few other questions include what are the main cures?  What does this disability affect?  I completely understand if you are not able to respond to this letter, for I know that you are very busy helping other people.  I greatly appreciate all you have done for me and all the time and effort you put into making my back feel healthy and normal.
 
 
 
                                                                   Thanks again,
                                                                                   Emily
Emily,
Wow, great question.
First thing to realize is that there are different types of scoliosis.
Neuropathic scoliosis is caused by muscle imbalances due to muscle spasticity or weakness caused by brain or spinal cord problems.
“Idiopathic” scoliosis:  “Idiopathic” by definition, means that we don’t know what causes it!!!
Isn’t that weird that they would have a word like “Idiopathic”?  
When I was in medical school at Harvard, we did a play, and made up some funny songs about medical words --- idiopathic was one of the funny words that we picked on, since it makes it SOUND like we know what causes it, by giving it a NAME (idiopathic), when in fact we have no idea what causes it!!!

We do know that genetics play a role in development of scoliosis, since there have been some human genes identified that tend to go along with scoliosis. This has resulted in a new genetic test coming out next year, where we can send off some of your DNA from a simple swab of your inner cheek in your mouth, and determine your risk of scoliosis progression based on your genes!

Beyond genetics, there appear to be environmental and other factors that affect development of scoliosis.  There have been some studies that suggest that scoliosis kids sometimes have a slight inner ear balance problem that can be picked up with sophisticated spinning tests used by NASA to test astronauts and pilots.  People have theorized also that the growth plates and ligaments may be different in children who get scoliosis.  Gymnasts, for example, are more likely to get scoliosis than other kids, in part, possibly, because good gymnasts are very ligamentously loose, which might put them at more risk for scoliosis.

Many parents have asked me whether carrying a backpack over one shoulder can cause scoliosis.
There aren’t any papers that I have found that have suggested this correlation, but backpacks can sometimes increase chance for back pain with or without scoliosis, and might certainly add load that theoretically could contribute to progression of scoliosis or kyphosis (Scheuermann’s or other types).  Many parents have also asked me whether bad posture sitting at your desk or at dinner table can cause kyphosis, justifying their strong instructions to “sit up straight and pull those shoulders back!. “  Well, while I do think it is good to be respectful of your parents, and to show respect by sitting up straight, there is no data to suggest that slouching increases your chances for scoliosis or kyphosis.  

We do know that Scheuermann’s kyphosis seems to be due to a partial growth arrest of the anterior growth plate of several vertebra in the thoracic and/or thoracolumbar spine.  This growth arrest leads to wedging of the vertebra, which leads to deformity.  Why does that anterior growth plate slow down or stop?  Maybe excess load.  My research at MIT years ago, and further research since then has shown that cartilage and bone can respond to loads, either positively, to create more cartilage or bone, or negatively, if the loads become so high that the cells and matrix get damaged.

I think one way to think about it is to ask the right question.  Should we be asking “What causes scoliosis?”  or should we be asking “How do more than 95 percent of kids and adults end up so perfectly straight, even though they started out as two very tiny squooshy cells?  We need to first appreciate how miraculous life itself is, including embryonic development, and growth through childhood and adolescence to realize that maybe a part of scoliosis just comes as a natural variant of what makes you unique!!  Tomato plants never grow up perfectly straight.  Neither do most trees.  Check out the embryology of spine development.  It is totally awesome and miraculous.  I maybe able to dust off my old embryology book, but given the fact that almost everything is on the Internet, you can probably find some great pictures on the web.

Don’t know if this helps, and because it has been a very long “scoli day” and helping kids with homework night, my grammar and spelling may not be great --- but I hope it helps!!

Good luck on your project.
You might also want to check out the Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) website at http://www.srs.org for other good information about scoliosis and kyphosis and possible causes.

I look forward to seeing your final result!

Sincerely,

Dr. Lloyd Hey
Http://www.heyclinic.com
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society. http://www.srs.org





 

Saturday, October 11, 2008

A Budding, New Doctor-Radiologist to be!

Barbara,
It was nice to meet you guys a few weeks ago in the hospital.
As promised, here are the photos with our wonderful young upcoming
radiologist!
Take care,
Dr. Hey
------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA

Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Special Thank You Note from 13 yo Sarabeth Adolescent Scoliosis Patient, and Her Family

Every day, I read countless medical records, X-Rays, MRI's, notes,
emails, faxes, and also listen to many voice mails.
It can seem at times like a river of constant activity.
However, almost every day, there is some special, small note that I
receive that makes me stop for a moment, smile, and feel very blessed.
This week, I received a wonderful little thank you note from Sarabeth
and her parents.
Sarabeth is 13, and is delightful, and has a wonderful family.
While Sarabeth was in the hospital, I came by late one evening to
check on her.
Her mom commented that my job must be hard on my family.
I told her that at times it can be, but my wife and kids understand
that if I work late, it is because there was someone who was really in
need.
Sarabeth's mom asked me a funny question at that point: "What is your
wife's favorite restaurant or food?"
I answered "Cheesecake Factory and Cheese Cake!"

Well, this week I received a wonderful thank you note from Sarabeth
and her parents, with a gift card for Cheesecake Factory.
I took a photograph of the thank you note, so I would not forget it.
If you can't read the photograph, here is what it says:
-----
"Dr. Hey,
"Thank you so much for doing my surgery. I feel really blessed to
have you as my doctor. Thank you for making my back straight and
pretty. Sarabeth

"Dr. Hey,
"There just are not words to express how much we appreciate all you've
done for Sarabeth. You and your staff are truly unique. You made
every step of the effort easy due to your caring and kind spirit. We
thank the Lord for equipping you with this Gift. Please thank your
family for their sacrifice of time without you to help ones like us.
Please accept this token card of appreciation."
"Cally and Cindy P______."
-------------

Tonight, I took my wife and my mom to Cheesecake Factory, and had a
wonderful meal -- a meal that was a real blessing especially to my
mom, who is going through a tough time with my dad's recent illness
and recovery.

So, thank you, Sarabeth and family for taking the time to say thanks.
You really ministered to my heart, and to my family.

:)
--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

27 yo nurse going home less than 48 hours after scoliosis surgery w/ Dr. Hey

On Thursday late afternoon, I "straightened out" Melissa's 54 degree
scoliosis.
Melissa is a 27 yo nurse, who has a long history of scoliosis going
back to her very early adolescence.
Her curve has progressed as an adult, and she had a very prominent R
thoracic rib hump.

Her surgery took a little less than three hours, and required no blood
transfusion.
At Melissa's request, I videotaped portions of her surgery using our
special high definition camera system.
After Melissa gets a chance to see her surgery in HD, perhaps she will
share some of it with our Blog readers/watchers in coming weeks.
She was able to go to our orthopaedic inpatient unit, to a large
private room where her sister could stay with her in a separate bed
next to her.
She did great postoperatively, with excellent correction of her
deformity. Her large right rib hump is now gone. We performed a
subcuticular plastic surgery-type closure with Dermabond, so her
incision looks great, and is waterproof for showering without a
dressing.
Melissa was up walking yesterday, less than 14 hours after getting up
to her room, and ambulated with little or no assistance.
This morning, approximately 40 hours after getting out of surgery, she
was walking the halls with the physical therapist in her bath robe,
and was eating well.
She paused for a minute in our "homebound room" to get a picture with
me on rounds, in front of our test car that we use to teach people how
to get in and out of a car after surgery.
She went home today looking great!
Melissa can start getting back to exercise this upcoming week, with
walking, treadmill, stair master, and some weight lifting and
stretching.
Get well soon, Melissa!

This is a good example why it is important to continue to follow
idiopathic scoliosis beyond the adolescent period, since some curves
will continue to progress significantly during adulthood.

It is also a good example of fixing scoliosis while you are a younger
adult, rather than an older adult, since the younger adults have more
flexible curves, with better correction, recover quicker, often
require less fusion levels and shorter surgeries with less surgical
risk and blood loss, have fewer comorbid conditions, and better bone
quality for quicker fusions and less hardware loosening and failures.
Younger patients have more years to enjoy their new shape, and by
fixing the curve when you are younger, you can help possibly prevent
the lower lumbar discs from wearing out more quickly due to the upper
spine forcing the lower spine to be out of alignment with asymmetric
loading leading to more rapid disc deterioration.

While I have helped patients with scoliosis literally from every
decade of life, from less than 10 years old to almost a hundred years
old (96 the oldest!), there is no doubt that it is better to be
proactive, following the curve throughout life, and intervene early if
curve is progressive, or if pain or other quality of life issues
become significant.

------------------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Thursday, October 2, 2008

FW: surgery. Postop Gratitude.

The email was sent to me this evening from one of our adult scoliosis patients in early healing period after her reconstructive surgery.
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery, Raleigh NC  USA
http://www.heyclinic.com

------ Forwarded Message
From: KATHERINE
Date: Thu, 2 Oct 2008 19:04:08 -0400
To: Lloyd Hey <>
Subject: surgery

Dr Hey,    

You must have known how you were about to change my life, but I had no idea.  Once again I will try to express my post-surgery appreciation.   I had folks all over America praying for me, so I now thank God for both your skill and the power of prayer. There are not words to show my gratitude.  I'm walking now with a walker, but will soon switch to a cane.  I know that eventually I will live normally again.  The constant pain, with levels as high as ten of ten, has all but disappeared (A couple nerves are fussing about having to come back to life.) and my atrophied leg muscles are regaining strength.  I had given up hope for this level of normalcy.

Rex rehab in Apex was a great follow-up to your surgery.  They have a trained back therapist on staff (Stacey) and she worked me hard.  I had three hours a day of therapy interspersed with hours of boredom and sleep.  I had been wheelchair bound for five weeks with unusable legs.  But, two and a half weeks after your awesome surgery, I walked out the door on a walker, able to climb stairs and walk the length of a football field before resting a minute or two then doing it again.  

You are my hero.   Thank you.    Kit


------ End of Forwarded Message


Today's Hey Clinic Scoliosis Surgery: 35 yo woman w/ severe double curve scoliosis

Just finished helping a delightful 35 yo woman named “Katie”, who had a very severe double curve scoliosis.  She has a 25 lb child, and has noticed progression of her deformity over past several years, but has always noticed her severe rib hump and lumbar hump.
She did very well with surgery today.
Surgical time:  4 hours 55 minutes.
Estimated Blood Loss:   2600 cc.
Blood Transfused:  None.
Evoked Potential Monitoring:  Normal Motor and Sensory throughout.
Correction:  Excellent.  Her posture at end of surgery showed dramatic correction of both “humps.”

Following surgery I got to meet w/ a couple of her sisters, but patient wanted to be sure that we shared her X-Rays so her other siblings and family members could get an update and see the pictures!

Due to the strength of her hardware construct, we will let her pick up her baby right away and advance quickly on her walking program!

------------------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Today's Hey Clinic Scoliosis Surgery: 46 yo 30 yrs sp Harrington Rod Fusion with Flat Back Syndrome and Severe Stenosis

Today we

Surgery Today: 13 yo young man with severe Scheuermann's Kyphosis

This morning we helped Hunter and his family.
Hunter just recently turned 13, and has had increasing severe kyphosis.
His X-Rays showed significant wedging of several thoracic vertebra, suggesting Scheuermann's Kyphosis.
This morning I restored Hunter's original normal shape through a posterior instrumentation and fusion using cobalt chrome rods and thoracic pedicle screw instrumentation.
His surgery took approximately three hours.
He required no blood transfusion.
He was able to go to a private room where his mom and dad can stay with him tonight.
His correction was excellent.
He will spend probably 2 nights in the hospital.

--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS)  http://www.srs.org



Surgery Today: 13 yo young man with severe Scheuermann's Kyphosis

This morning we helped Hunter and his family.
Hunter just recently turned 13, and has had increasing severe kyphosis.
His X-Rays showed significant wedging of several thoracic vertebra, suggesting Scheuermann's Kyphosis.
This morning I restored Hunter's original normal shape through a posterior instrumentation and fusion using cobalt chrome rods and thoracic pedicle screw instrumentation.
His surgery took approximately three hours.
He required no blood transfusion.
He was able to go to a private room where his mom and dad can stay with him tonight.
His correction was excellent.
He will spend probably 2 nights in the hospital.

--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC  USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS)  http://www.srs.org



Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Interview w/ 12 yo adolescent 3 months after thoracolumbar scoliosis surgery back playing sports

_________
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
http://www.heyclinic.com
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS)
http://www.srs.org

Monday, September 22, 2008

Fwd: Emily 12 yo Adolescent Scoliosis Email and Pictures. Are you Stiff after Scoliosis Surgery?

From: Nick
Date: September 21, 2008 10:41:16 PM EDT
To: Dr. Hey
Subject: Emily's Email and Pictures

Hello Dr. Hey:
We got your message Friday evening and our family email address is >>>>>

After we met Friday, I had my first Softball tournament since the weekend before my surgery. We did really well. We finished 2nd and lost the final game 5-4. I played every inning of all 9 games except for 2 innings in the first game. The first 2 games of every tournament are pool games and teams try to play everyone on their roster. I do not have the complet numbers for the tournament, but I batted .475 and played first base thru the whole tournament. In the Semi-final game, we were down 4-3 in the final inning and I hit the game tying RBI and scored the game winning run. My dad told me I was a little rusty, since my average last year was .504. I anchored 4 double plays and only had 2 errors in the field. My back feels great. I have had no tightness this weekend. My parents were concerned that with the 3 month layoff, I would be stiff, but I feel just like I did before my surgery.
All of my friends are amazed at how well I am doing. They were very happy to hear the good news I got Friday.
Also, another patient of yours, Bob ______, was at the tournament. We were playing his daughter, Amber, in the Championship game. Mr. L_____ has been very concerned sine my diagnosis and surgery. He could not get over the fact that I was playing and how limber and quick I was.
There is one draw back from the Surgery, because I am 2 inches taller, my "Strike Zone" is bigger. So Umpires are calling more "low strikes" on me. HaHa.
Thank you for all of your help in getting me better. I am sending a couple of pictures from the game.
Sincerely,
Emily


--------
Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Spine Surgeon
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
O: 919 790-1717
M: 919 215 0170
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Hey Clinic Surgery Today: 13 yo boy with severe Sheuermann's Kyphosis Now Straight

This morning we helped Hunter and his family.
Hunter just recently turned 13, and has had increasing severe kyphosis.
His X-Rays showed significant wedging of several thoracic vertebra, suggesting Scheuermann's Kyphosis.
This morning I restored Hunter's original normal shape through a posterior instrumentation and fusion using cobalt chrome rods and thoracic pedicle screw instrumentation.
His surgery took approximately three hours.
He required no blood transfusion.
He was able to go to a private room where his mom and dad can stay with him tonight.
His correction was excellent.
He will spend probably 2 nights in the hospital.

Adolescent Scoliosis Patient back playing competitive softball within first 3 months of surgery. FW: Hey Clinic


From: Nick
Sent: Monday, September 22, 2008 2:42 PM
To: Meredith Railey
Subject: Re: Hey Clinic

Hey Meredith

So you were able to get the photos. Great! Thank you again for all ya'll have done. We were very proud this weekend and every one was amazed. Emily has been involved with travel softball for 6 years, and all of these girls from all over the state are like one giant family. When word got out this April about Emily, everyone from all these teams called or stopped by to give her encouragement and to let us know they were praying about her. After the first two games Saturday morning, everyone was coming around and congratulating her on the recovery and expressed amazement. And she had a very good tournament to start of with.

We had a lot of prayers and they were answered. Thanks again to everyone in the office.

Jill

----------------------

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS

Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery

Raleigh, NC USA

http://www.heyclinic.com

O: 919 790-1717

M: 919 215 0170

Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org

Friday, September 19, 2008

Lifelong Spine Care at Hey Clinic. The age range of success stories seen today in clinic


At Hey Clinic, we do life-long scoliosis care, from small children, through adolescent, young adult, middle-aged adults, and older adults.
In the picture above, we can see an example of the age range of guests we have served, and seen in clinic just today and yesterday.
Each guest and their family has their own goals, and receives different benefits from getting their scoliosis fixed. Some of the guests below have been featured in previous blogs, including Mary, from Princeton NJ who got a phenomenal correction from a thoracolumbar sacral instrumentation and fusion, now with excellent posture and ability to return to active walking program, and ability to go back to work at at a Princeton "Think Tank". We also saw Candice, who is a grad student with thoracic scoliosis with hypokyphosis / lordosis which we were able to fix to pull her chest wall out to a normal shape. Our 12 year-old was also only 3 months out, and played 3 different sports this summer after her surgery, and is also playing sports this fall as well.

On Monday this week I saw a very nice 14 yo girl from Indiana with severe Scheuermann's kyphosis, measuring almost 85 degrees, who found us through Molly, our Michigan teenager who came down this summer to get her kyphosis fixed.

It has been a very busy week at Hey Clinic, and now it's time to recharge the batteries.



Lifelong Spine Care at Hey Clinic

Lloyd A. Hey, MD MS
Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Surgery
Raleigh, NC USA
Member, Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) http://www.srs.org