equestrian-picThe condition: Heather Malvarosa – a life-long equestrienne, Councilwoman, and nurse for special needs children – began suffering severe pain in her hips at the age of 53. Doctors determined it was due to a decades-old injury, most likely from a fall off a horse when Heather was a teenager. "I would wake up in the morning extremely stiff. Moving around throughout the day became incredibly challenging," the Fishkill, NY, resident recalls.

The treatment: Heather turned to spine specialist, Dr. Frank Ulrich Hermantin. He diagnosed spondylolisthesis – a condition often referred to as spine slip, where a vertebra is out of its normal alignment with the adjacent vertebra. The pain Heather was feeling was her body overcompensating for the arthritis in her spine. Dr. Hermantin performed lumbar fusion surgery. A plate, two screws, and a cage were inserted into her lower spine area to stabilize her vertebra. "The goal of lumbar fusion surgery is to relieve pain, numbness, tingling, and weakness; restore nerve function; and stop or prevent abnormal motion in the spine," said Dr. Hermantin. "We strive to bring patients back to an appropriate level of activity."

The result: A day after the procedure, Heather was walking and she left Danbury Hospital two days later, completely pain free. "I was really nervous," recalls Heather. "I’ve always been so active; the thought of having spine fusion surgery seemed really intimidating, but it was well worth the drive from Fishkill to Danbury to see Dr. Hermantin. I have my mobility back and the chance to ride again. I received the best care possible – I consider this a miracle and am so grateful to Dr. Hermantin."

Disclaimer: Any prior results discussed in this site do not guarantee a similar outcome.