Change A Habit
Specialized psychotherapy services for people suffering with chronic health care issues.
with Siobhan O'Connor
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By Dr. Peter Abaci
As you may have read in the news, Tiger Woods is recovering from a recent back surgery – his fourth back operation in the past few years (this one being a fusion). Once the greatest golfer in the world, Tiger had his first surgery in 2014, but since then, even after two more surgeries, has not been able to successfully return to the pro tour. No doubt he is hoping that this recent operation will eventually get him to a place where he can compete at the highest level and without debilitating pain.
Tiger is among many pro athletes who, eager to get back to the game quickly, opt for surgery instead of just waiting for things to heal. Unfortunately, as many of them find, quicker may not equate to better.
Steve Kerr, a former NBA player, and current NBA coach continues to struggle with the complications of his low back surgery and issues a strong warning: “…if you have a back problem, stay away from surgery. I can say that from the bottom of my heart. Rehab, rehab, rehab. Don’t let anyone get in there.” Is this sage advice or just the sentiments of an unfortunate individual with a rare bad outcome?
And, more importantly, where does spine surgery fit in for the rest of us who are not professional athletes? What do you do if you are a construction worker, nurse, or landscape gardener with a bad back who is trying to get back to work but can’t tolerate the bending and heavy lifting? Even office jobs can be impacted by back pain if prolonged sitting causes too much aggravation. Or maybe you just want to get back to golf with your friends, playing ball with the kids, and doing chores around the house.
How do you navigate dealing with the pain, concerns about pain-killer addiction, and deciding on whether surgery is the right choice or not?Read More