The devastating second wave of Covid-19 is on its downward spiral in most parts of India. This wave started in the first week of April and by the end of May it was under reasonable control. This was achieved mainly due to the lockdowns imposed in most parts of the country. Now that the country is slowly reopening, talks are already underway for the imminent arrival of the third wave. Many estimates suggest that the third wave is going to hit the country in the months of August – September.
The patients who are suffering from other problems like Back Pain, Gall Stones, Ano-rectal diseases, Uterine Fibroids, Ovarian Cysts, Cataract, Kidney Stones etc had a bad time in the last 15 months. They were neither able to go to the hospitals nor get personal consultation from the doctors. The hospitals were overburdened with covid patients and had no beds left for the other patients. The fear of contracting covid at these hospitals was also weighing in the minds of these patients. They have been postponing their treatment for far too long. The condition of many patients who require surgery is deteriorating. There is a small window of about 30-45 days during which these patients should get the surgery done before the onset of the 3rd wave of Covid.
The patients who can still postpone their surgical treatment should immediately get physical examination done by their doctor. This is the time when there are almost no covid patients admitted at most of the hospitals and the OPD’s are fully functional. Alternatively the patients can go to the clinics of the doctors which are covid safe. Many of these clinics have been functioning even during the peak of the pandemic. Leading Spine Specialist Dr Sudeep Jain who has been operating through his clinic in New Delhi says that `Ignoring back pain and postponing the treatment for long can take away the option of non-surgical treatment for many spine patients. We have been operational throughout the pandemic and giving physical and video consults to our patients from all parts of the world. This has helped many patients who could not travel to Delhi due to the lockdowns and travelling restrictions. Patients whose surgery cannot be postponed any longer should utilize this small window and get the treatment done at the earliest.’
Other patients who have experienced the problem for the first time during the pandemic should get clinical examination at the earliest and start the treatment. If and when the 3rd wave strikes, your doctor would be aware of your condition and can provide follow-up treatment through video and phone consultation. The pandemic is here to stay until significant population is vaccinated and there would be 4th, 5th and many other waves of the virus.
Vaccination is the key to keep the Corona virus at bay. Get yourself vaccinated at the earliest even if you get the first dose. Postponing the treatment for long period of time can make the treatment expensive and less successful. So far it was not in your hands as the conditions forced you to stay locked in. Utilize this window of opportunity and give yourself the gift of good health.
Patients from all parts of the world come to India for getting high quality surgical and medical treatment at very low costs. Indian doctors are rated very highly even in the developed countries. However the cost of treatment in the developed countries is sometimes more than 10 times the cost of treatment in India. Most of the spine surgeries are being done in the price range of USD 6000 – 8000 in India. The same surgery would cost in excess of USD 100,000 in the US. Patients who are planning to come to India for their treatment try to gather information from internet. The most commonly searched query on google is `Best Doctor for Treatment in India’. Each patient would search the treatment for their disease. What pops up in the top search results are either the hospital websites or the aggregators. These digital aggregators would list hundreds of doctors of each specialty. For a patient it is impossible to find out who is the best doctor for their ailment. Health in India is a platform which tries to give you the correct information about each doctor and the hospital.
Spine surgery is being done by both the neurosurgeons and the orthopedic surgeons. The nerves coming from the brain and going into the legs and other body parts are present in close proximity of the spine. Since the nerves fall in the domain of the neurosurgeons, many people believe that neurosurgeons are better suited to do spine surgery. Most of the diseases of the spine are related to the curvature of the spine or discs. Spinal Tumors are also not very uncommon these days. Most of the spine surgeries involve correction of the curvature or instability of the spine using special implants. These implants are mostly titanium rods, cage and screws. These implants are used for fixation of the vertebrae in the spinal column. Some of the surgeries involve removal of the disc and replacing it with artificial disc. Disc is the soft cushion between two vertebra. The spine is divided into 3 parts – Cervical Spine (starts from the back of the neck), Dorsal Spine (middle part) and Lumbar Spine (Lower Back). Most of the problems of spine are in the Cervical region or the Lumbar region due to poor posture, lack of exercise and weak muscles.
Equipments and Techniques
Use of high resolution microscope, endoscope and specialized surgical equipments have made spine surgery much easier. The incision also is much smaller in most of the spine surgeries. Many spine surgeries are done as minimally invasive procedures. The results of the surgery would depend on the experience of the surgeon and the facilities available at a particular hospital. The price of the surgery would also depend on these two variables. Patients can share the MRI Reports and films with the Spine Specialists in India and setup online consultation before deciding to come to India for the treatment. The cost of online consultation with some of the best spine surgeons in India is in the range of USD 50 – 80 which is just a fraction of the cost of consultation in other countries. Do not fall for free consultation which is being offered by many hospitals and doctors. Anything which is offered free always has some catch which will be beyond your comprehension.
Best Spine Specialist in India
Every hospital will claim that they are the best in doing any procedure. India has more than 150 hospitals which get international patients. These include some of the top hospital chains like Apollo, Fortis, Max, Narayana, Global, Medanta etc. One must always consult 2-3 doctors before finalizing the destination for your treatment. The consults must always be `Video Consult’ as you get good idea about the personality of the doctor and their confidence when you are able to see the face. I have spent more than 22 years, studying the Indian Healthcare. The names listed in this article are not an exhaustive list of the spine surgeons in India. Some of the topmost spine surgeons from the field of Neurosurgery are Dr. Arun Saroha, Dr Sandeep Vaishya, Dr Rana Patir and Dr Sharad Kale. The best part is that 3 out of these 4 neurosurgeons are operating in Gurgaon which is 20 minutes drive from New Delhi airport. If you choose to come to Gurgaon for Spine Surgery, then you would have the opportunity to consult all the 3 top spine surgeons in India before opting for the hospital.
Another good thing is that Dr. Arun Saroha who is the Director of Spine Surgery at Max Hospital and Dr. Sandeep Vaishya who is working with Fortis Hospital Gurgaon are just across the road from each other. The top Orthopaedic Spine Surgeons in India are Dr. Sudeep Jain, Dr Hitesh Garg and Dr Manoj Miglani. Dr Sudeep Jain and Dr Manoj Miglani are working in New Delhi while Dr Hitesh Garg is at Gurgaon. If you want the best doctor and best equipment, then Dr. Arun Saroha at Max Hospital would be my first choice. However if you are looking for the best doctor with some flexibility in the price then Dr. Sudeep Jain would be the best choice because he is operating at 4 Delhi hospitals which fall in different price range. Dr. Sudeep Jain has enviable qualifications and excellent track record when it comes to the most complex spine surgeries. Whichever doctor or hospital you choose for your treatment, the decision should be yours. The best way to decide is to meet the doctor for consultation.
Most of the difficult decisions are made easier when you are sitting face to face with the doctor. Good doctors would radiate confidence and would be measured in their approach. They would not appear like a salesman to you. When in doubt, trust your inner voice.