If Dr. Brandon Kelly, neurosurgeon at Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center (EIRMC), could give just one piece of advice to spine surgery patients, it would be this: Before surgery, look at and discuss your medical images with your spine surgeon. Understand what the structural problem is, how it is affecting you and what the treatment options are for your specific problem and your particular anatomy.

“Every patient comes with a unique set of pictures and their own story. I think it’s very important that each patient insist that the spine specialist reviews the film with them in person. Sit down, talk it out and take it all into consideration. Then come up with the next chapter together. Personalized medicine isn’t the future; it is the present. It is so sad that I have a lot of people come to me for a second opinion and they’ve never seen their spine films before.” Dr. Kelly said.

To customize spinal surgery, board-certified, spine fellowship trained experts at EIRMC adhere to national standards and guidelines while simultaneously incorporating each patient’s medical history, life goals and physical condition.

“I perform surgeries that best fit the patient’s particular anatomy,” Dr. Kelly said. “Sometimes surgeries are minimally invasive and sometimes they’re large reconstruction; but I always look at what the patient brings to me and together we come up with an individualized plan.”

Try this first: Spinal solutions that don’t require surgery

Before undergoing spinal surgery, Dr. Kelly often recommends maximizing nonsurgical therapies.

“Most people can access some level of pain relief through nonsurgical options,” Dr. Kelly said. “So, when people come see me, we take significant time discussing what’s going on with their bodies and all the possibilities of treatment. Then, depending on each patient’s circumstance and choices, we can develop a thorough plan for nonsurgical care.”

Nonsurgical options include:

  • Physical therapy
  • Home exercises
  • Spine injections
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management medication

A return to quality living

If nonsurgical treatments don’t bring forth enough respite from pain, surgical intervention can be the best option. Dr. Kelly and his specialized surgical team interweave advanced skill sets and innovative surgical techniques to perform a wide range of spinal surgeries, spanning from complex spinal reconstruction of deformities to minimally invasive procedures like a discectomy, which relieves pain from pinched nerves.

“All of our treatments aim to increase independence, mobility and pain control,” Dr. Kelly said. “Spinal surgery is all about improving quality of life. Through a well-planned and carefully executed operation, we can make an extremely positive impact on someone’s life.”

To provide top-quality, patient-focused treatment, spine specialists collaborate and communicate while offering seamless, compassionate care.

Team efforts for individualized care

Successful spinal surgeries involve a team of highly trained experts uniting to fulfill a personalized surgery plan. That means multidisciplinary medical groups gather to focus on one patient at a time.

“We have an excellent staff who work really well together and maintain an intense patient focus. It’s absolutely a team effort as we come together to discuss the patient’s problem and then provide tailored solutions,” Dr. Kelly said.

Spine teams often consist of neurologists, radiologists, neurosurgeons, anesthesiologists, orthopedic surgeons, pain medicine specialists, physical medicine specialists and physician assistants, X-ray technicians, specialized nurses and physical therapists. We bring all of this expertise to develop and implement the best plan for each individual patient.

Results that provide relief

For patients suffering from life-disrupting and debilitating back pain, spine surgery can provide an improved and liberating life.

“I fully recognize that no one wants to have spine surgery; and even more, no one wants a spine surgery done poorly. I also know the tremendously positive impact spine surgery can have on a person’s everyday life – it can give people the ability to walk and stand without pain again,” Dr. Kelly said.

That’s why Dr. Kelly spends extra time with each patient, forming a partnership as they discuss diagnosis, treatment options and expectations.

Are you suffering from back pain and desire relief? Schedule a consultation with Dr. Kelly at East Falls Neurosurgery and Spine, call 208-522-7572.