Spine is Still Pain-Free After Experimental Procedure 28 Years Ago

A spinal condition from birth was so painful Larry Wyatt couldn't walk or stand. No doctor could help him. Then he found a surgeon with a new experimental spinal procedure, and he's still active and flexible 28 years later.

Running five days a week after back surgery

I’m Larry Wyatt, we live in Alamo, KY which is near Murray State University. My back started giving me problems back in 1987. I had my first surgery then, it had to be redone again in April of 1991. It was still giving me trouble, I contacted that doctor and he said that’s all he can do. I could just barely walk. I was talking to some friends and he recommended Dr. Davis here in Nashville. I came down to see him. He did a discogram. He said what you need...I’m getting ready to retire shortly...but I got a physician coming in from Johns Hopkins University. His name is Dr. David McCord. He said by the way he’s from Christian County, where we live, so that made me feel a little better.

So we came down and had an examination. He said it’ll be a little while before his equipment could be set up for this particular kind of surgery. So we waited while we were on the call list. Nurse called and said, “We got you scheduled for Friday, but nobody wants to be first. Do you mind?” (for this particular surgery). I had been lying on my back for 30 days now, I said I’ll come tomorrow if you can help me! So she set me up for surgery, it lasted eight and a half hours.

I was released from the hospital in about 4 days. The last time I saw Dr. McCord was in 1993, and he released me. I started seeing a chiropractor in 1997, and she’s kept me going. I do have some occasional flare ups but I work in lending at a bank and missed very few days of work. So I feel very fortunate that I had this type of surgery, it’s really helped. Things are going really well now.

My particular surgery he fused L4 and L5 because I had a narrowing of my spinal cord at the base. Dr. McCord said that was from birth, and had to actually move nerves over and go in the spinal cord canal, clean it out, and give me more room for my nerves to operate. He said I was destined to have this trouble from the narrowing of the space. My previous doctors had mentioned that but they didn’t want to tackle that problem. Dr. McCord said he had some new nerve monitoring equipment, it was a new procedure. It went well, I’ve been up and going, seven grandchildren...life is good!

When I first met Dr. McCord and he examined me, looked at my MRIs, previous surgeries. He was pretty emphatic he said, “I think I can help you, I think I can get you going. I’ve done this type of surgery at other locations.” I felt confident in him because he seemed to know what he was doing, seemed to care about people. My schedule was handled properly, followed up visits where handled well I thought, for the whole duration.

Surgery went well, I’ve been up and going, seven grandchildren...life is good!

So I really appreciate what he’s done for me, that he’s kept me going. At one point it’s pretty scary when a doctor says I’ve done all I can do, but you’re lying flat on your back and can’t hardly walk around the house.

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