Chennai based Fortis Malar Hospital announced the success of an anterior cervical decompression surgery and fusion performed on 74 year old Mohan Krishna who was unable to walk due to the onset of severe cervical spondylosis. Dr. Venkat Prasanna, Senior Consultant Neurosurgeon at Fortis Malar Hospital performed the minimally invasive spine surgery. Post a short recuperation period; the patient has resumed regular day-to-day activities without any complications.
74 year old Mohan Krishna was used to leading an active life. However, over the past year he started to sense heaviness and numbness of both lower limbs. The numbness gradually progressed upwards from the feet to the trunk. In addition he also experienced a sensation around his stomach that felt like a “constricting band” with heaviness. As a result, he had difficulty walking and was having trouble performing day to day activity with his hands such as signing his name.
An MRI scan revealed severe cervical spondylosis which is the compression of the spinal cord due to degeneration of the vertebrae. Quite often spondylosis involves excessive bone formation which compresses the spine. There was a prolapse of C5, C6 level discs in the spine. The resultant compression was preventing the nerve signal transmission through the cord to the trunk and legs making them weak and heavy.
To treat the problem Dr. Venkat Prasanna and team of doctors performed a neck surgery from the front to remove the cervical vertebrae and discs that were causing compression. The neurosurgeon applied a spacer in the neck and fitted it with a plate and state-of-the-art artificial cage. The entire procedure lasted close to 3 hours. The patient was able to resume walking same evening of the day of surgery. Within a week of recuperation, Mohan Krishna was back to leading an active, healthy life.
Dr. Venkat Prasanna, Senior Consultant Neurosurgeon Fortis Malar Hospital highlighted the benefits of spine surgery as a feasible treatment option for the elderly, saying “There is great skepticism in India regarding spine surgery and the elderly. Age is only a figure and not a determinant of the success of a surgery. Chronic problems like diabetes can be dealt with prior to surgery to ensure no complications. There needs to be awareness among elderly patients with spine problems that surgeries performed on people over 70 have positive outcomes. Over the years, there has been such tremendous advancement in minimally invasive surgical techniques that quite often it proves to be a more comfortable and efficient solution to spinal problems.”
“Initially I was apprehensive about surgery at my age. But when it came to a point when I couldn’t write my name, I started weighing the pros and cons. After much discussion with the doctors I made an informed decision to proceed with surgery. It definitely worked in my case. I am able to go back to going for walks with my friends and going out with my family. Little things that you usually take for granted” said Mohan Krishna
Neurosurgeons at Fortis Malar Hospital have successfully performed over 500 surgeries on patients including septuagenarians and octogenarians. Through their surgery, the neurosurgeons have helped enhance the quality of life for their patients. Agriculturalist Subramanyam was unable to walk more than 100 feet at a stretch before needing a break. His condition worsened to a degree where he could not use the toilet without assistance. A routine decompression surgery alleviated his problem and he is back to leading an independent life.
Medical professionals at spine clinic at Fortis Malar Hospital provide comprehensive care to patients of all ages.