Although our neurosurgeons have extensive training and experience in brain surgery, they are also highly proficient in the treatment of back and neck pain, and disorders of the spine.
We specialize in all aspects of spine surgery, including lumbar and cervical disc surgery, spinal stenosis, tumors of the spine and spinal cord, spinal trauma, spinal instability, and back and neck pain. We also treat painful vertebral compression fractures, often due to osteoporosis, with a simple surgical procedure know as kyphoplasty. Our surgeons perform hundreds of spine operations each year, from simple outpatient lumbar (back) and cervical (neck) microdiscectomies, to removal of spinal tumors, to extensive fusions for traumatic and degenerative conditions. The use of the operating microscope allows our neurosurgeons to perform many operations through tiny incisions, with minimally invasive techniques. This means that many patients can be discharged the same day, and that recovery and return to work can be accelerated. The routine use of fusion plates in cervical discectomies means that our patients never need to wear a cervical collar.
The physicians and staff at Neurosurgery Northwest have extensive experience in the treatment of all forms of tumors affecting the brain, spine and spinal cord. They provide treatment at the cutting edge of current therapy. Our surgeons and staff are there, every step of the way, to help our patients through their surgery, postoperative recovery and any subsequent therapy.
Recent innovations, such as intraoperative computer guidance allow the surgeons of Neurosurgery Northwest to treat tumors with an accuracy that was previously considered unobtainable. This allows our surgeons to precisely locate the tumor, choose the safest and least invasive approach, define, isolate and remove the tumor. We are highly skilled in the use of this technology and are very proficient with the systems available in each of the hospitals.
Neurosurgery Northwest pioneered the use of Gliadel wafers in the South Sound, a technique which allows our surgeons to implant medicine directly into the tumor bed after removal of the tumor. As the wafer dissolves, it delivers chemotherapy to any remaining tumor, without the side effects of systemic chemotherapy. It has been shown to be highly effective in fighting tumors, and can be used in combination with conventional chemotherapy and radiation therapy. In recognition of our experience, Neurosurgery Northwest has been invited to join a National Trial of this technique. We are now participating in that study.
Neurosurgery Northwest's surgeons maintain active hospital privileges, and routinely perform surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital, Mary Bridge Children's Hospital, Tacoma General Hospital, and St. Joseph Hospital. They hold courtesy appointments at Allenmore Hospital, St. Clare Hospital, and St. Francis Hospital, but do not currently admit patients or perform surgery at these facilities.