Smoking Behaviors and Spine Surgery Healing

Dr Paul McDonough MD pic
Dr Paul McDonough MD
Image: fixmyspine.net

Paul W. McDonough, MD, serves as a spine surgeon with Orthopedic Associates of Abilene in Texas.
There, Dr. Paul McDonough guides patients through the process of undergoing and recovering from neck and back surgery.

Over the years, research into recovery from spine surgery has shown improved patient healing times and experiences. One of the most recent investigations into this topic has revealed that the impact of smoking on recovery correlates directly with lifelong intensity of the habit.

A recent study, presented at the North American Spine Society’s 31st annual meeting, followed 212 patients who underwent treatment for cervical spondylotic myelopathy. Researchers assessed each patient both preoperatively and postoperatively using the Nurick scale, which evaluates patients’ challenges in walking.

Although the study found no difference in preoperative scores, nonsmokers returned postoperative improvement of 1.53 Nurick scale points, while smokers demonstrated improvement of only 0.6 points. Furthermore, and perhaps more significantly, scores lowered commensurately with a patient’s packs per day and number of pack-per-day smoking years.

Because smoking habits affected postoperative rather than preoperative scores, researchers hypothesize that tobacco use has a negative effect on the body’s healing processes. For surgeons, this finding reinforces the importance of smoking cessation counseling as part of preoperative preparations.

Prevention of Lower Back Pain in Golfers

Dr Paul McDonough MD pic
Dr Paul McDonough MD
Image: fixmyspine.net

Paul W. McDonough, MD, provides surgical intervention for neck and back pain. As a spine surgeon with Texas’s Orthopedic Associates of Abilene. In his free time, Dr. Paul McDonough enjoys playing golf.

Many golfers, both professional and amateur, suffer from low back pain. It often stems from a swing technique that places undue stress on the spine, back muscles, and facet joints. Golfers can help prevent this excess stress by improving mobility in the middle back and hips, as this can relieve some of the load and torque on the lower back.

The middle back has more natural rotation ability, and maximizing rotation there can help a golfer to reduce the need to rotate the less flexible lumbar spine. Stretches such as seated twists can be extremely beneficial, and hip exercises like clamshells, lunges, and stair work can strengthen the hips and support rotation from below.

Golfers can also keep their lower backs stable by establishing a strong standing balance, in which the feet are shoulder-width apart and the knees are bent. This engages the gluteus muscles and the quadriceps, while allowing the pelvis to move forward. The golfer then bends slightly forward from the hips and stands on the balls of the feet.

Benefits of TMA Membership — Physician Advocacy

Texas Medical Association (TMA)
Texas Medical Association (TMA)

 

A spine surgery specialist at Orthopedic Associates of Abilene, Texas, Paul W. McDonough, MD, performs operations on various neck and back deformities and injuries. In conjunction with his professional career, Dr. Paul W. McDonough is a member of the Texas Medical Association.

Membership in the Texas Medical Association (TMA) comes with a number of benefits. Among one of the most prominent of these is physician advocacy with the government.

TMA works on behalf of its 49,000 member physicians to help guide policy, both on the state and federal level, by lobbying against burdensome regulations, fighting for vital funding for physician programs, and reinforcing legislation that protects the independence of doctors to exercise their medical judgment in caring for patients.

Other efforts the TMA undertakes for its members in the court system include opposition to increasing the practice scope of non-physicians, holding payment networks accountable for timely reimbursement, and preserving the right of doctors to maintain complete control over their medical decisions.

Volunteering with the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra

Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra Guild
Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra Guild

As fellowship-trained spine surgeon in Abilene, Texas, Paul W. McDonough, MD, treats patients at Abilene Regional Medical Center. Outside of work, Dr. Paul McDonough contributes to the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra.

Those who wish to contribute to the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra can volunteer with the organization’s guild. Members of the guild meet nine times per year to enjoy music in members’ homes and discuss upcoming concerts. Volunteers help in a number of ways, including by organizing seating for students during the Philharmonic Discover Music Series concert.

Guild volunteers can also help meet the needs of musicians and visiting artists by assisting with auditions, transportation, and concert logistics. Further, volunteers can help keep costs low by hosting visiting musicians in their homes.

Finally, the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra Guild offers youth an opportunity to take part in Belles and Beaus, a five-year program through which young people serve as ushers at concerts. Recognized by the governor of Texas, this program can enhance students’ future college applications.

ISMISS 2017 in Chicago

International Society for Minimal Intervention in Spinal Surgery pic
International Society for Minimal Intervention in Spinal Surgery
Image: ismiss.com

Paul W. McDonough, MD, devotes his practice in Abilene, Texas exclusively to spine surgery. Dedicated to continuing education, Dr. Paul McDonough belongs to the North American Spine Society.

The North American Spine Society offers continuing education credits for a number of events and conferences throughout the year. Members can obtain up to 12 American Medical Association PRA Category 1 Credits for attending the Annual Meeting of the International Society for Minimal Intervention in Spinal Surgery (ISMISS), which will take place at Swissotel in Chicago from January 18 through January 20, 2017.

ISMISS’s 35th Annual Meeting will include a full-day cadaver workshop at the Spine Education and Research Center. The workshop will focus on minimally invasive surgical methods, such as cervical microendoscopic discectomy, lateral transforaminal fusion, lateral lumbar interbody fusion, and decompression of stenosis. Attendees will also benefit from didactic sessions that include symposia and case presentations.

To learn more about the event, visit http://www.spine.org/ismiss.

Book Readers Enjoy Longer Lives

 

Book Readers pic
Book Readers
Image: sciencealert.com

As a spine surgeon specialist at Orthopedic Associates of Abilene, Texas, Dr. Paul W. McDonough performs operations on various neck and back deformity and injuries. At home, Paul McDonough, MD, spends his time reading biographies, medical journals, and books about British history.

Researchers at Yale University conducted a recent study which showed that book readers are likely to live longer than the average person. The results of the study were published in the Social Science & Medicine journal.

The research was done by looking into 12 years’ worth of information from 3,635 citizens, who are at least 50 years old. There were three groups, each with a specific reading duration. One group did not read books, another read books on an average of 3.5 hours a week, while the last group read books for a longer period. The ones who read up to 3.5 hours per week have a 17 percent chance of living longer than those who did not read books. The ones who read for more than three hours a week are 23 percent more likely to live longer.

Even before the study, book readers have already been regarded to live longer than non-readers by two years. Other benefits of reading books include getting better sleep, enjoying a more relaxed life, and warding off Alzheimer’s disease.

Choosing a Spine Surgeon

Dr Paul McDonough MD pic
Dr Paul McDonough MD
Image: fixmyspine.net

Dr. Paul W. McDonough earned his MD at UCLA School of Medicine, where he graduated number one in his class in surgery. Paul McDonough, MD, uses his specific training in spine surgery to treat patients at Orthopedic Associates of Abilene in Abilene, Texas.

If you are experiencing chronic neck or back pain especially with radiating pain down your arm or leg, you may want to consider spine surgery as a treatment option. As with any surgery, it is a good idea to ask questions to eliminate any uncertainty prior to undergoing treatment. One important question that should be asked is who is the best surgeon to be doing my spine surgery?

As a spine surgeon only provides spine surgery, they are likely to be more adept and up-to-date with current surgical techniques. A surgeon who only occasionally performs spine surgery may not be as knowledgeable or practiced with the newest techniques. The possibility of receiving minimally-invasive spinal surgery also may be more likely with a surgeon who focuses specifically on spine surgery.

Once you have chosen the surgeon you believe to be the best to treat your particular condition, you should raise any questions or concerns regarding possible treatments or procedures. Your surgeon’s responsibility is to assist and educate you during this information-gathering process. Your options should be discussed, along with the benefits and risks involved with each option. It is crucial to choose a surgeon you feel is knowledgeable and experienced.

More information about Dr. Paul McDonough, and his training can be found on his website, “fixmyspine.net“.