Blog/ Daily Posts

Cervical Radiculopathy – updated in 2024

Last updated in 2024

See below for some common symptoms and treatments for cervical radiculopathy.

  • Radiating arm pain and/or numbness and tingling
  • Usually due to a ruptured or herniated disc in the cervical spine or narrowing of the exit hole for the nerve also called neural foramen stenosis
  • May be also associated with cervical spinal stenosis which can lead to spinal cord damage or cervical myelopathy
  • If not associated with spinal cord compression can be initially treated with conservative care
  • Conservative options include: Neuropathic medications, physical therapy and manipulation therapy, Cervical Epidural Injections
  • Surgery is usually via an ACDF or anterior cervical discectomy and fusion from the front of the neck for refractory cases and/or those with severe neurological issues including spinal canal stenosis.
  • When indicated surgery is usually very successful and the benefits far outweigh the risks
  • Other causes less common of this type of pain may include shoulder disease, neuropathy, CTS, brachial plexopathy, vascular disease


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(501) 661-0077




Images obtained via google

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Sacroiliac Joint Pain [Updated 2024]

There are many causes for low back pain that are treated here at Legacy. One common condition that can often be overlooked originates at the sacroiliac (SI) joints. They are located where the ilium of the pelvis meets the sacrum—the left and right sides of the sacrum.  Strong ligaments and muscles hold the SI joints in place and allow only a few millimeters of movement when the body bears weight or flexes forward. Arthritic and certain age-related degenerative disorders may gradually erode protective joint cartilage, which can subsequently lead to instability and pain that can mimic some of the symptoms of lumbar pathologies.

Understanding Sacroiliac (SI) Joint Dysfunction

The Role of the SI Joints

The sacroiliac joints play a crucial role in transferring weight and forces between the upper body and the legs. Strong ligaments and muscles support these joints, allowing limited movement. This movement is essential for activities such as walking and lifting. However, the SI joints are also susceptible to dysfunction, leading to lower back pain.

Causes Beyond Arthritis and Degeneration

While arthritis and degenerative disorders are common culprits of SI joint dysfunction, other factors can contribute to or exacerbate the condition:

  • Injury: A fall, car accident, or any impact that affects the lower back can injure the SI joints.
  • Pregnancy and Childbirth: The body releases hormones during pregnancy that allow ligaments to relax, potentially leading to altered joint function and pain.
  • Gait Issues: Abnormal walking patterns can place uneven pressure on the SI joints, leading to dysfunction.
  • Hypermobility or Hypomobility: Either too much or too little movement in the SI joints can cause pain.

Identifying SI Joint Dysfunction

Diagnostic Challenges

SI joint dysfunction can mimic other lumbar spine disorders, making diagnosis challenging. A comprehensive assessment is crucial, which may include:

  • Physical Examination: Specific maneuvers, such as the FABER (flexion, abduction, and external rotation) test, can indicate SI joint involvement.
  • Imaging Tests: While X-rays, MRI, and CT scans can help rule out other conditions, they may not always clearly identify SI joint dysfunction.
  • Diagnostic Injections: Injecting a local anesthetic into the SI joint is often the most definitive way to diagnose SI joint dysfunction.

Expanded Treatment Options

Conservative Approaches

  • Manual Therapy: Chiropractic adjustments or osteopathic manipulation can help alleviate pain by restoring proper alignment and function.
  • SI Joint Belts: These can provide additional support, especially during pregnancy or early stages of rehabilitation.

Advanced Treatments

  • Radiofrequency Ablation: This minimally invasive procedure can provide long-term pain relief by disabling the nerves that send pain signals from the SI joint.
  • SI Joint Fusion: In severe cases, surgically fusing the SI joint may be considered to stabilize the joint and reduce pain.

Lifestyle and Home Remedies

  • Exercise: Tailored exercises to strengthen the core, pelvic floor, and buttocks can improve joint stability.
  • Posture: Educating patients on proper posture and ergonomics can prevent further strain on the SI joints.

Recent Advancements

Recent research has focused on improving diagnostic techniques and treatment outcomes for SI joint dysfunction. Innovations in minimally invasive surgery, such as robotic-assisted SI joint fusion, have shown promising results, offering greater precision and potentially faster recovery times.


Understanding the complexities of SI joint dysfunction is crucial for effective treatment and management. By considering a wide range of causes, employing thorough diagnostic strategies, and utilizing both conservative and advanced treatment options, healthcare providers can offer relief to those suffering from this condition. Staying informed about the latest advancements in treatment can further enhance patient care.

Adding these details will provide your readers with a comprehensive understanding of SI joint dysfunction, its impact, and the multifaceted approaches to treatment available at Legacy. This expansion not only enriches your original content but also positions your blog as a valuable resource for those seeking to understand and find relief from low back pain.





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Toothache? OR Trigeminal Neuralgia? [Updated 2023]

Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN), also known as Tic Douloureux and or the suicide disease, is a chronic pain condition that affects the trigeminal or 5th cranial nerve, one of the most widely distributed nerves in the head.

Trigeminal Neuralgia is often misdiagnosed as dental pain, since pain is frequently triggered when someone chews or talks. However, pain can also occur when someone touches their face, shaves or simply feels the wind.

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30 Year Anniversary of Dr. Schlesinger’s Publication of a Landmark Article!

It is the 30 year anniversary of the publication by Dr. Scott Schlesinger of the landmark article on the technique of minimally invasive far lateral disectomy approach.   The publication was the outcome of a one year fellowship in minimally invasive neurosurgery at Le Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV)  in Lausanne Switzerland.   This detailed study of the microanatomy of this unique approach along with the technique was published in ACTA Neurosurgica and subsequently presented to the European  and American National Neurosurgical societies.

The operations main benefit is it spares the removal of the entire spine joint on the side of surgery (facet joint) thus minimizing the iatrogenic risk of future spinal instability and therefore lowers the chances of needing a lumbar fusion procedure.  Therefore the standard alternative to this MIS approach involves doing a simultaneous lumbar fusion with instrumentation or in many cases the delayed need for such.   The far lateral approach to ELLDH has been used by the authors in thousands of cases over the last 30 years both in Switzerland and in the United States with excellent outcomes.  Also the anatomy learned in this research has subsequently been used by Dr. Scott Schlesinger to develop the SLIF MIS fusion surgery.  This uses a far lateral approach for a “screw-less” standalone MIS decompression and interbody fusion.

Learn more about the unique offerings at Legacy Neuro of the SLIF and other MIS procedures including the ELLDH surgical option.

Click below to view the original article and to view several videos regarding this approach!

Microsurgical Anatomy and Operative Technique for Extreme Lateral Lumbar Disc Herniations

Video 1

Video 2

Video 3

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Screwless | Lumbar Interbody Fusion (S-LIF)

THE WORLD’S LEAST INVASIVE LUMBAR FUSION SURGERY: the S-LIF, Developed by and available exclusively at Legacy Spine & Neurological Specialists.

Sciatic nerve pain can be disruptive. Constant pain and numbness due to a compressed nerve with spine instability can hinder your daily life. So can invasive spinal surgery and the recovery time that comes along with it. But not anymore, thanks to S-LIF technology.

The S-LIF is the least invasive option for lumbar fusion surgery available anywhere in the world. When Dr. Schlesinger developed the MIG-LIF procedure in 2015, it was the least invasive fusion option also done through a keyhole outpatient surgery. While this was a great breakthrough at the time in MIS spine surgery, Dr. Schlesinger felt that the next logical step was to achieve the same outcome with even less surgery.

Through application of his microsurgical skills and experience in delicate surgery on aneurysms and tumors of the brain, this next step became a reality. The S-LIF is the least invasive option in the world for many patients with the need for a decompression and fusion of the lumbar spine. It is not for all patients as some still require more invasive surgery. But for those that are candidates for MIS surgery, this is an outstanding option.

The S-LIF procedure is performed by our two talented neurosurgeons Scott Schlesinger, MD, and Dominic Maggio, MD. Scott Schlesinger, MD has practiced neurosurgery since 1992. He trained in Neurosurgery at UT Southwestern with a fellowship in Lausanne, Switzerland. He has received multiple awards and multiple recognitions as the Best Neurosurgeon in the state. Dr. Schlesinger is the founder of Legacy Spine and Neurological Specialists and the developer of the S-LIF procedure.

Dominic Maggio, MD joined the Legacy team in July 2021. He is an excellent surgeon who specializes in the S-LIF procedure as well as a wide variety of other spinal surgery. He trained at the University of Virginia-National Institutes of Health neurosurgery program and received multiple awards for his research and clinical skills. He subsequently did a fellowship at Ohio State University in complex and minimally invasive spine surgery techniques.

To find out if the S-LIF is an option for you or for more information please call or send us a message today. We look forward to the opportunity to serve you!

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Legacy Updates!

Important Announcements To Legacy Spine and Neurological Specialist’s Patients

While 2020 and 2021 have been very challenging and unprecedented years, we do have some very good news to brighten the day of all our Legacy team and patients!

Kelli Schlesinger MD and I are excited to announce that Dominic Maggio MD Neurological Surgeon will be joining our Legacy practice in July.  Dr. Maggio joins us from his complex spine fellowship at Ohio State University and his neurosurgery residency at University of Virginia, Charlottesville.  He comes with tremendous training and experience  from two of the best neurosurgery  training programs in the country.  He is a very talented neurosurgeon with expertise in minimally invasive and complex spinal surgery.  He will be moving to Little Rock with his lovely family with 3 young children.

We will continue to offer telehealth services for the foreseeable future to facilitate your treatment plan, particularly those of you who live long distances away. We are excited about some new MIS technology and innovation‘s coming our way this year and in continuing to use our outpatient minimally invasive SLIF surgery (Screwless Lumbar Interbody Fusion) when a fusion surgery is needed on the lower back through a key hole incision.   For the last four years we have worked with some innovative spinal companies and imaging technology companies to develop the most minimally invasive lumbar fusion surgery option that is available anywhere in the world!


Additional developments:

In May, Dr. Flaxman and Dr. Magnuson, anesthesia pain management doctors of Southern Regional Anesthesia Consultants (SRAC), will be joining our team in performing injection procedures at the Legacy Surgery Center.  They also offer medical pain management services at their office for patients needing medication management.

Dr. Carlos Roman, an anesthesia pain provider of Proper Pain Solutions (PPS) will no longer be performing procedures at Legacy Surgery Center.   However, his pain management partner Dr. Eugene Becker will be performing injection procedures on patients we have clinically shared with PPS at Legacy Surgery Center.

Notice:     PPS Drs. Roman and Becker perform pain procedures at other facilities in the state.  Their Little Rock office is adjacent to our surgery center.  Due to these factors accidents can happen with where you are scheduled for future spinal injection procedures.  We want you to be aware of this possibility and if it happens we urge you to remind their scheduler of your desire for your procedures to be carried out exclusively at Legacy Surgery Center if you desire our continued concomitant care and back up in case of any need for urgent surgical care.

Why?  In the best interest of your spinal care it is our medical policy that all the patients we are caring for undergo all needed spinal procedures at Legacy Surgery Center.

Why?    All spine procedures carry a small but definite risk of complications including spinal bleeding that could possibly need emergency neurosurgery operative intervention.    If spinal procedures are done elsewhere and there is an unforeseen complication needing urgent surgery, there will be a significant delay in our ability to intervene.    This could possibly lead to irreversible paralysis that might have otherwise been avoided if not for the delay.   Also, and very importantly, when spinal procedures are performed elsewhere, we have limited ability to participate in your spinal management plan, have difficultly accessing the images from the procedures and the records of such as compared to the ease of such when done here at Legacy Surgery Center.   We believe in staying directly involved in all aspects of your spinal care to ensure the best possible quality of all of your treatment plan.  As neurological specialists we are trained in attention to detail.  We cannot achieve these goals when procedures are done on your spine elsewhere.

Therefore if you are a patient that has seen either PPS doctor at any of their clinic sites in Little Rock, Morrilton and Russellville and you are inadvertently offered or scheduled for spine procedures at one of the other outpatient surgical facilities where they work, you can and should insist that your spine procedures be performed at Legacy Surgery Center by Dr. Becker or by Legacy physicians if it is your desire that our Legacy Neurological physicians remain the “Captain” of your Spine-care-ship and be readily available for any possible emergency surgical care.

Why?   There is far more to your spine care than the actual injection of a medication with a needle into your spine.     Most pain management doctors are anesthesiologists or physical medicine rehabilitation doctors who not trained in neuro-imaging, neuro-anatomy, neuro-pathology and neuro-physiology like our Neurosurgeon and Neurologist specialists are.  PPS pain management doctors Becker and Roman are excellent at anesthesia pain management.    But they are not only not trained as surgeons of the spine, they are not surgeons of any kind.  Surgery is a field of expertise that takes 7 years of post medical school training and cannot be learned as a weekend course.   I strongly advise you to always confirm that whoever is proposing to do any form of open surgery that involves an incision and putting anything in your body other than a needle on any part of your body is in fact a trained board certified or board eligible surgeon in that field.  Nothing could be more important than confirming this for any form of spine surgery offered to you as there are pain management doctors that are performing open surgical procedures on the spine including placing spinal implants in patients after merely taking a course.  This is not the kind of training you want for your spine surgery needs!  

We strongly feel that all patient’s spine care diagnosis and plan should be created and managed by a neurological spine specialist or by spinal orthopedic surgeons regardless of who does an actual injection procedure.  We also strongly feel that whoever is your spinal surgeon should be on staff at the site where any spinal injection procedures are being performed on you regardless of who does the actual injection procedure for the reasons above – in case of a surgical emergency complication and for access to the information, records, and images for continuity of your care. 

We stay actively involved in your care all along the way with adjustments whenever necessary based on your response to various interventions starting with the least invasive plan first even if you do not initially need surgery or ever need surgery.   We are also well prepared and experienced with minimally invasive surgical options should such be necessary.

We are happy to continue to manage of your spine care if you continue to see either doctor of PPS for medication management as long as you insist that any of your spine procedures are done at our location by Dr. Becker or us for all the reasons above.  There will be no interruption of your care with these changes and apologize for any confusion this may cause.

If you instead desire to transfer your overall spine care management to PPS, we can be available at any point in the future to resume your care surgical or non surgical in the future.

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Asymptomatic Cervical Stenosis

Your condition involves narrowing of the cervical spinal canal discovered on imaging that appears to have no current symptoms nor findings on exam and therefore surgery is not indicated at this point even though there is pressure to some degree on your spinal cord.  Neck pain without other red flag symptoms does not warrant surgical recommendations. 


            Normal Canal           Cervical Stenosis





Why one person with cervical spinal stenosis is having major symptoms and another with the same MRI findings has none is unknown but very commonly seen.

In the normal spinal canal the spinal cord floats freely in the cerebrospinal fluid, CSF or spinal fluid, which serves as a protective shock absorber.  In patients with Cervical Spinal Stenosis the amount of CSF around the spinal cord is markedly diminished reducing the ability to protect the spinal cord from normal impacts or stronger forces.   This increases the risk of injury to the spinal cord from various normally tolerated forces.  You have seen this in football games when a player gets a sudden hard impact to the head and neck and suddenly goes paralyzed.   Most of these patients had this impact injury develop due to having such a blow in the setting of previously asymptomatic cervical spinal stenosis that was likely present since birth but never known to exist until the injury.   Fortunately the NCAA and NFL have focused on these “targeting” incidents in recent years. 


Most of the time if the patient has no symptoms neurosurgeons will suggest non surgical follow up observation only with recommendations to avoid high risk activities unless:

  • The cervical spinal stenosis is particularly severe in degree
  • There is associated with spinal cord edema
  • The patient’s career has unavoidable risk of high impact injuries
  • The patient has no symptoms yet does have positive findings on   neurological examination of spinal cord dysfunction
  • The cervical spinal stenosis is progressively worsening on follow up MRI scans


   Many patients ask why do we not go ahead and do surgery if there is cervical spinal stenosis even without symptoms or exam findings?

The answer:

  • The risk of surgery for cervical spinal stenosis must be weighed against the risk of observation. In most patients who are without symptoms the risk benefit ratio favors observation only.
  • Most people who have asymptomatic cervical spinal stenosis do not ever develop the need for surgery by never becoming symptomatic nor showing exam findings of spinal cord dysfunction nor significant MRI worsening during follow up over time.
  • Most asymptomatic patients that ultimately become symptomatic and need surgery for cervical spinal stenosis will develop warning or red flag minor symptoms early enough that they usually have no long term side effects from not having surgery done prior to symptoms.
  • Most patients with asymptomatic cervical spinal stenosis do not suddenly go paralyzed from their condition, unless there is a major impact injury that would likely injure even a patient without cervical spinal stenosis, but rather develop slowly progressive red flag symptoms
  • Medical studies on asymptomatic cervical spinal stenosis consistently support the role of observation vs prophylactic surgery.


When non-surgical observation only is the plan it is recommended that you avoid:

  • Sports and non sports axial load injuries
  • High-energy impact sports such as skydiving, downhill skiing, cliff climbing, football etc
  • Falls
  • Car, bike and motorcycle accidents whenever possible
  • Forceful Manipulation of the head and neck including physical therapist or chiropractic neck manipulation


The above is recommended in order to mitigate the increased risk of spinal cord injury in patients with cervical stenosis as compared to someone with a normal spinal canal.    Again people without cervical spinal stenosis have risks of spinal cord injury and paralysis with the above but those with cervical spinal stenosis have a statically increased risk of injury with the same force applied as compared to a person with a normal spinal canal.  Nevertheless, the same applies to breaking a leg or an arm from a fall in patients with osteoporosis versus normal bone.  We would not recommend putting casts on all the limbs of osteoporotic patients to prevent fractures from a fall!


Typically if non surgical treatment is the plan you will be followed up after a period of time with a clinical follow up visit +/- a follow up MRI at variable intervals for years to come and be advised to contact your neurosurgeon sooner if you develop any concerning red flag symptoms listed below.











Once patients develop symptoms and/or findings on exam then the condition is called “cervical myelopathy”.    Typically the MRI will show abnormal signal changes like the images above due to edema of the spinal cord in patients that are symptomatic from the cervical spinal stenosis.    This term is used to describe dysfunction of the spinal cord from many causes but in this case it is due to cervical spinal stenosis and the damage from the pressure on the actual spinal cord. 



 Red flag symptoms to be aware of that might be indicative of cervical stenosis becoming symptomatic include any of the following:


  • Development of numbness and tingling in the arms and/or hands
  • Development of electric shock sensations that run down the spine or through the extremities with such activities as movement of the neck or coughing, sneezing or bowel movements etc. (Lhermitte’s phenomenon)
  • Development of pain running from the neck down one arm of the other or both.
  • Development of clumsiness or loss of dexterity with loss of fine motor movement of the fingers and of the hands. This may evidenced as problems buttoning ones shirt or developing problems writing with a pen or clumsiness typing with a keyboard.
  • Development of unsteadiness and clumsiness of gait while walking. This may present as stumbling when walking for no apparent reason. This is particularly noticeable when present during attempts to perform field sobriety testing, tandem gait testing or walking placing one foot immediately in front of the other while trying to walk a straight line
  • Development of significant weakness of the arms and hands that may present with inability and to normally use one’s hands and arms in the normal course of work and or play activities
  • Development of clumsiness and dysfunction and stiffness of the muscles of the upper or lower extremities (spasticity)
  • Development of urinary &/or bowel incontinence particularly associated with symptoms above is a typically a very late symptom. Isolated urinary problems would be uncommon due to cervical spinal stenosis and more likely related to urological/GI disorders. 


If symptoms develop or MRI findings worsen or findings on neurological exam appear then surgery will likely be needed. 

When needed surgery can be either an anterior cervical decompression and fusion surgery or a posterior cervical decompression with or without fusion or both depending on your anatomy.    


Hopefully your cervical spinal stenosis will never need treatment but please carefully read the warnings above and be mindful of the red flag symptoms discussed.  Please report to your neurosurgeon development of any concerning symptoms when they develop.  Do not wait for the follow up visit if these symptoms develop sooner.   Regardless, keep your scheduled follow up plan even if you have zero symptoms and are pain free!    

Any questions or concerns visit

Scott Schlesinger MD

Legacy Spine and Neurological Specialists

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Selective Nerve Root Block


A selective nerve root block (SNRB) is a test performed to determine if a specific spinal nerve is the source of your arm or leg or radiating chest pain. Often patients with spine issues have multilevel MRI abnormalities often close together.   If we treat your problem with conservative care and it fails to respond, then surgery for your radiating pain may be an option. However, due to the above issue identifying which abnormality on the MRI is the cause of the actual radiating pain can be a challenge.   In most cases pain that radiates in a radicular fashion as above is caused by just one nerve root regardless of the number of abnormalities on the MRI. Therefore, we are trying, like an electrician would do in your house to find the short circuit, to isolate the responsible nerve that is the source of the pain.

A SNRB is performed to diagnose the specific nerve root of origin of your cervical (neck), thoracic (mid back) or lumbar (low back) radiculopathy (pain in the distribution of a particular nerve root off the spine due to compression, irritation and/or inflammation of a nerve root). A selective nerve root block is an injection of a local anesthetic that lasts hours to a few days very close to a specific nerve root. Along the spine, there are several exit “holes” or “foramina” through which nerve roots emerge. If these foramina are partially closed due to either bony overgrowth from degenerative changes, bulging disks, misalignment of vertebrae, etc., the nerve root can also be pinched. This typically causes a shooting or radiating pain along that nerve root. In a selective nerve root block, a small needle is placed in the foramen alongside the nerve root, and the medication is injected. The goal of a diagnostic injection is twofold. 1. We want to see if the needle adjacent to the nerve creates radiating pain that closely replicates your typical radiating pain for which you are seeking relief. 2. To see if, while the nerve that we injected adjacent to is “asleep” or effectively blocked by the local anesthetic, your normal radiating pain is gone or improved during any period of time while the block is effective. Your feedback helps to identify the cause of radiating pain.



When the nerves in the foramina are irritated or pinched, the resulting inflammation can cause pain, numbness, or tingling. If the local anesthetic is acting on the correct nerve that is causing the pain, then the temporary resolution of pain will provide diagnostic information to your doctor.





The actual injection takes only a few minutes. Please allow about an hour for the procedure; this will include talking to your doctor before the procedure, signing the informed consent, positioning in the room, and observation by the recovery room nurse afterwards.


The injection consists of local anesthetic that can last for a few hours to days (e.g., bupivacaine).



All of our procedures begin by injecting a small amount of local anesthetic through a very small needle. It feels like a little pinch and then a slight burning as the local anesthetic starts numbing the skin. After the skin is numb, the procedure needle feels like a bit of pressure at the injection site. The actual placement of the needle is not painful. However, keep in mind the nerve root is pinched and irritated. If the needle tip brushes against the nerve during placement, you may feel a “zing” down the nerve root, similar to striking your “funny bone”. During the injection of the local anesthetic, there may be a temporary shooting pain along the nerve root’s normal distribution until the local anesthetic sets in, usually in about 15 seconds. These sensations are normal and if they are very similar or identical to the pain that you normally experience then this information is very helpful in confirming the diagnosis of the “pain generator” in your case. It is very important that you let the doctor know doing the injection if you feel the typical shooting pain or not as the needle is nearing your nerve!   If the radiating pain you feel during the procedure is not in the normal distribution that you feel this is helpful information as well.   If you do not feel any radiating pain, then the needle may not have gotten close enough to the nerve. The medicine could still reach the nerve through diffusion so the block may still give diagnostic information, but we prefer to get the needle as close to a nerve as possible without injuring the nerve.




It is typically done with you lying on your stomach for thoracic or lumbar and on your back for cervical blocks. Your vital signs will be monitored. In addition to your doctor and the x-ray technician, there will be a nurse in the room at all times if you have any questions or discomfort during the procedure. The skin on the back or neck is cleansed with antiseptic solution, and then the procedure is performed.





Immediately after the injection, you may feel your legs or arms, along that specific nerve root, becoming heavy, numb or weak. You may notice that your pain may be gone or considerably less. This is due to the effect of the local anesthetic. Your pain may return, and you may have some soreness at the injection site for a day or so. It is very important to be careful for several hours afterwards to avoid falling due to weakness if done on the lumbar or thoracic spine or dropping or mishandling things with your hand or arm if done on the cervical spine. This should resolve with the passage of hours but if it persists beyond 8 or so hours please notify our team.



The immediate effect is from the local anesthetic injected. This wears off at varying time intervals. It may last only 30 minutes, or it may last up to several weeks or months. The length of time that you experience relief is not as important as how much relief you experienced. Please document carefully even hourly for the first day or so.   If lucky some even get long term relief of the pain from the nerve block. Of course, that would not only be of diagnostic but therapeutic benefit!

Risks vs Benefits:

Like all procedures or tests there are risks and benefits. The benefit as above is to localize a potential target for surgery when patients have multiple possible causes. The goal here is limiting surgery to the least invasive option possible by treating only the cause of the pain not all the abnormalities on an MRI.   The risks include nerve injury, bleeding, post procedure increased pain, allergic reactions, spinal headache, infection and very rarely major neurological complications including the very rare risk of paralysis. Complications are very unlikely and most if they occur can be resolved with treatment. Nevertheless, all procedures and tests have risks.


Selective nerve root blocks are important to help identify the nerve root of origin of your radiating nerve pain. Although the procedure may be uncomfortable, our staff is dedicated to making you as comfortable as possible during the procedure.

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Seizure First Aid

Do I call 911?

Seizures do not usually require emergency medical attention. Only call 911 if one or more of these are true:

  • The person has never had a seizure before.
  • The person has difficulty breathing or waking after the seizure.
  • The seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes.
  • The person has another seizure soon after the first one.
  • The person is hurt during the seizure.
  • The seizure happens in water.
  • The person has a health condition like diabetes, heart disease, or is pregnant.

These are general steps to help someone who is having any type seizure:

  • Stay with the person until the seizure ends and he or she is fully awake. After it ends, help the person sit in a safe place. Once they are alert and able to communicate, tell them what happened in very simple terms.
  • Comfort the person and speak calmly.
  • Check to see if the person is wearing a medical bracelet or other emergency information.
  • Keep yourself and other people calm.
  • Offer to call a taxi or another person to make sure the person gets home safely.

First aid for generalized tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizures

When most people think of a seizure, they think of a generalized tonic-clonic seizure, also called a grand mal seizure. In this type of seizure, the person may cry out, fall, shake or jerk, and become unaware of what’s going on around them.

Here are things you can do to help someone who is having this type of seizure:

  • Ease the person to the floor.
  • Turn the person gently onto one side. This will help the person breathe.
  • Clear the area around the person of anything hard or sharp. This can prevent injury.
  • Put something soft and flat, like a folded jacket, under his or her head.
  • Remove eyeglasses.
  • Loosen ties or anything around the neck that may make it hard to breathe.
  • Time the seizure. Call 911 if the seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes.


Knowing what NOT to do is important for keeping a person safe during or after a seizure.

stop sign with hand

Never do any of the following things:

  • Do not hold the person down or try to stop his or her movements.
  • Do not put anything in the person’s mouth. This can injure teeth or the jaw. A person having a seizure cannot swallow his or her tongue.
  • Do not try to give mouth-to-mouth breaths (like CPR). People usually start breathing again on their own after a seizure.
  • Do not offer the person water or food until he or she is fully alert.
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People Working Out

Too Much, Too Little, Just Right

All too often a patient will come into clinic that has been very diligent with a fitness regime for years but despite preemptive health measures the patient will develop low back pain. It is described as a deep ache that is worse in the morning and/or night begins to interfere with the normal activities of his/her day. Seems like such a waste of time to put all the effort into staying fit then still having pain, right?

Often there is no specific injury and very little diagnostic grounds other than “facet hypertrophy” (described normally as arthritis in the low back) to support the claim of this pain. Chances are with most of these patients, arthritis did not develop in the last week or month. It is an accumulation of years of repetitive weightbearing and compressive forces to the spine that have brought about this change. The question remains, what can be done to improve this pain when you already believed you were doing all the right things to stay healthy?

In terms of treatment with patients that present with the history that I have outlined above; moderation becomes a recurrent phrase of emphasis. Other useful tools are variation and observation. Mixing up the cardio routine with a variation of biking (indoor or outdoor), swimming, and walking. If you have a gym routine for lifting weights or resistance exercises, try mixing things up by doing body weight activities or group aerobics. It may also be a nice change of pace to do a beginner’s class of yoga or Pilates. Moderation and observation are key parts to avoiding overuse injuries that cause setbacks.

There is current research to suggest that indeed there is a “happy medium” to activity. Too much activity can have as much of a negative impact on the body as doing nothing at all. Take home points:

  1. Use Variation in exercise choice
  2. Practice moderation with strenuous activities
  3. Observe how your body responds to activity and modify if necessary

If you are having setbacks due to low back/neck pain from too much activity or you find yourself sedentary and have no idea where to start, give us a call at 501-661-0077 for a consultation and evaluation at Legacy Spine and Neurological Specialists so that we can get you Back to Life!

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