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"I want to express my appreciation and say thank you for allowing me to walk like I am 40ish once again instead of like a 90 year old woman. Dr. Cohen has given me my life back inside of 6 weeks.

I am an active 49 year old and love to play golf. In August 2015 on a golf vacation down in Myrtle Beach, I began to fall out of nowhere. I fell four times in three days. I thought it was an old ankle injury causing my foot to feel weak. Then I noticed I could not keep up with my husband walking through the store. Normally I have to stop and wait for him because I walk very fast but my legs felt sluggish and tired. I had my usual pains in my back and took two Aleve before going to the course like I do everyday. I continued to play golf not thinking it was much of anything. The pain in my back progressively got worse over the next three days to the point that I was shuffling my feet, tripping, and could not walk. My legs now felt like they were 100 pounds each. I could not bend down to pick up my clubs or mark my ball on the green. I was in a big tournament and due to the pain that I was experiencing, I had to withdraw. When I returned home to NJ I was in Dr. Cohen's office within three days, and underwent surgery 5 days later.

My back and neck are loaded with many issues, but the culprit to this problem were three herniated discs from T-11 down to L-2. They were like spears protruding into my spinal cord pinching off the nerves that allow me to move my legs. As the days went on the nerves were dying. Once the nerves die, you can't revive them. The longer you wait, the less chance of walking normal again, or at all, diminishes. Most people do not know this and wait due to the fear of surgery. They prolong the inevitable by getting injections, physical therapy, and pain medications. By the time they do have the surgery it is less effective for being 100% back to normal. I wanted to be 100% normal and have the ability to play golf again. I wanted to walk without pain and have complete mobility of my legs. So I elected to have spinal fusion on four vertebrae immediately.

The way I see it; I do not want to be like my family that has a huge history of back problems. They suffer every day with pain and believe that surgery is the worst thing you can do. This stems from my uncle having back surgery in 1975 and it did not go well. He has put the fear in all of them and this type of surgery is taboo. With today's technology, along with Dr. Cohen's ability to perform such intricacies, there is no need to be afraid. I was more afraid of never walking again and being attached to a wheelchair like my mom because she waited too long, than having the surgery.

Thank you Dr. Cohen for taking the time to educate me and for being sensitive to my fears. You gave me my life back and I am so grateful to have met you. You made me feel comfortable in making my decision and I had absolutely no fear before surgery. Immediately after surgery I had complete mobility in my legs and I was walking without pain just as you said I would be. I have no doubt that golf is in my future come April next year. Hope to see you out on the links!!" -- Jaimie C. 

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