Most people have back surgery to relieve pain, but all too often it doesn't help. For the half million people who undergo back surgery each year, and the additional million who are seriously contemplating it, Do You Really Need Back Surgery?, Second Edition, is a godsend--an informed, reliable guide to when you should consider surgery and when you should not. Written by an internationally recognized expert in nerve and spinal surgery, this highly readable guide covers everything back patients need to know to make informed decisions about their treatment. The book discusses the details of spinal anatomy; explains the difference between acute, chronic, and recurring pain; shows how to keep the spine healthy; and defines such terms as spurs, stenosis, and slippage. It also reveals what clues your physician uses to predict whether a given type of pain is likely to go away with rest and exercise, and which types may become emergencies. Dr. Filler discusses the risks of surgery, the decisions you may be faced with and what options you have, and your expectations for recovery. He provides detailed explanations of the wide array of spinal injections and surgeries, including discectomies and fusions, as well as innovative procedures such as electrothermic and laser techniques and artificial disks. He explains the various medical imaging and diagnostic tests available and even covers the complexities of health insurance. The new and extensively revised edition of this book is expanded to cover the impact of dozens of new advanced technologies in spinal diagnostics and treatment that have emerged in the eight years since the original very successful edition. Advances in new types of pain medications and new types of surgeries that minimize recovery time and achieve better outcomes are explained. In addition, this book examines the problems in the case of a few new devices in spinal surgery where money from medical device manufacturers has led to distorted research that had to be withdrawn. A major change from the previous edition is the inclusion of two chapters that describe a series of different nerve entrapment syndromes that can cause headache, neck, shoulder and arm pain as well as causing buttock and leg pain - but are not caused by spine problems. This includes information about piriformis syndrome causing sciatic, thoracic outlet syndrome causing shoulder and neck pain and about pudendal nerve entrapments causing groin and pelvis pains. From Pilates to pedicle screws, and from osteoporosis to spina bifida, Do You Really Need Back Surgery?, Second Edition, covers all the questions your doctor usually doesn't have the time to answer. Featuring almost 100 illustrations, it is an essential manual for every neck or back pain sufferer.