Combo Platter

Restaurateur relieves nerve pain with help from two nonsurgical devices.

A salty yet slightly sweet pork stew called adobo is one of the signature dishes in Filipino cuisine, and some of the best adobo this side of Manilla can be found at a small restaurant called Eat Sarap on the grounds of the Flamingo Flea Market in Bonita Springs.

Treatment at Advanced Spineworks has alleviated Tess’s debilitating neck, shoulder, hand and leg pain

Sarap is a Filipino word that means yummy or delicious,” says Tess Herbst, a 57-year-old native of the Philippines who opened Eat Sarap a decade after she moved to the United States in 2008. The restaurant has kept her on her toes ever since.

“We had to close for three months because of the coronavirus, but other than that, we have been very busy,” Tess notes. “We’re so busy that I’m actually glad we’re only open on the weekends.

“I had no idea we’d be this popular, but as it turns out there’s a fairly large population of Filipino people in this area. And, of course, the food is great. We serve all the traditional Filipino dishes, including adobo, kaldareta and pancit.”

Though she has a partner who helps, running even a small restaurant can be a physically taxing chore.

Since opening Eat Sarap, Tess has discovered just how taxing that job can be as the work has taken a toll on her entire body.

“The problem started a few years ago with some stiffness in my neck, and after I opened the restaurant it got a lot worse,” she laments. “In the morning especially, my hands, legs and feet would all be numb and tingly, and that made it hard for me to move and work.

“At first, I tried to ignore it and work through it, but it was hard to lift some of the heavy pots and pans. And there were times when I would go home at the end of the day and feel awful and exhausted because of it.”

Tess’s pain even affected her social life. She and her husband love to dance, but the pain in her legs and feet made dancing virtually impossible. With her pain affecting most every aspect of her life, it wasn’t long before Tess sought medical help.

She initially tried massage therapy, which helped a little, but the pain, tingling and numbness usually returned a day or two after each massage. She then tried acupuncture, but that provided only temporary relief as well.

“I asked one of my doctors what I should try next,” Tess says. “She said, Why don’t you try seeing Dr. Hunte. He has a machine for the neck that might help you. So, I called Dr. Hunte and made an appointment to see him.”

Unique, Nonsurgical Device

Dr. Hunte is Bryan T. Hunte, DC. He is the founder of Advanced Spineworks in Bonita Springs, where he and his staff take what he describes as “a highly scientific approach” to chiropractic care and physical rehabilitation.

“That’s what makes our facility unique,” Dr. Hunte says. “We don’t just stop at relieving someone’s pain. We focus on the corrective phase of care, using equipment that cannot be matched by traditional approaches.

“This corrective phase of care is what restores the musculature around the injured area. When the musculature is restored, the patient experiences relief. And the equipment we use has a unique way of restoring this support even in the most severe cases.”

As he does with all new patients, Dr. Hunte began his treatment of Tess with a thorough examination. He didn’t need to delve too deeply, though, to learn what it was that prompted her visit.

“It became clear rather quickly that she was dealing with nerve pain that was running down her legs, down her arms and across her shoulders,” Dr. Hunte reports. “She was also experiencing a lot of back pain due to standing on hard surfaces all day.

“Wow, this is like a miracle.” – Tess

“She had been dealing with this for more than two years, and it was pain in the nine and 10 range on a scale of one to 10. So, I suggested we treat her with the MCU machine and the Eccentron, and little by little, we knocked the pain out.”

Like the adobo and kaldareta at Tess’ eatery, the MCU machine and the Eccentron are two of the staples of
Dr. Hunte’s treatment regimen. It is a regimen that leans heavily on what doctors refer to as evidence-based medicine.

The MCU, which stands for Multi-Cervical Unit, is a nonsurgical device that not only diagnoses weaknesses in the neck, but also restores neck strength and balance through a specified workout regimen designed around results obtained during an initial trial.

During that trial, the MCU records 16 different ranges of muscle movement for strength to determine the areas of the neck where weaknesses or imbalances are present and there is a loss in range of motion.

Based on the findings, Dr. Hunte builds a course of treatment on the MCU that typically consists of 27 sessions over a nine-week period. During that period, the patient is tested three times and the treatment is adjusted based on the test results.

The Eccentron is a negative-resistance device on which a patient performs leg exercises that improve strength, balance and endurance. Like the MCU, it assesses the patient’s progress throughout the course of the workout and provides objective data.

An Eccentron program consists of 30 minutes of strength training. During that time the patient plays a game on a computer screen that results in the patient performing up to 670 repetitions that stimulate atrophied muscles and reconnects them to the nervous system.

Dramatic Improvement

With the Eccentron workouts building up her leg and back muscles and the MCU building up her neck muscles, Tess began to notice a dramatic improvement in her physical status after only a few sessions.

“I could sense that something was changing after the first or second session,” Tess relates. “At first, the numbness and tingling wasn’t lasting as long. Then, after a while, it just completely went away. I thought to myself, Wow, this is like a miracle.

“We don’t just stop at relieving someone’s pain. We focus on the corrective phase of care.” – Dr. Hunte

“Now, the pain, numbness and tingling are completely gone, and I can work hard in the restaurant the way I want to. It feels so good not to have that pain anymore and be able to drive and dance and do whatever I want with no problem at all.”

In addition to treating her with the MCU and Eccentron, Dr. Hunte also gave Tess a series of exercises to perform as part of a home-maintenance program. Tess says those exercises and the work on the MCU and Eccentron have made a huge difference in her life.

“I love those machines. They really helped me a lot. Every time I used them, my neck and legs felt better,” she exudes.

“And Dr. Hunte is so nice. He’s a very good, very positive person, and he’s so helpful with all his patients. I definitely recommend him to anyone.”

© FHCN article by Roy Cummings. Photo by Jordan Pysz. mkb
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    • Advanced Spineworks

      Advanced Spineworks multidisciplinary approach using chiropractic and physical rehabilitation makes them your one-stop source for effective pain relief, rehabilitation and results. Whether you are dealing with back pain, neck pain, headache or a... Read More

    • Bryan T. Hunte, DC

      Bryan T. Hunte, DC, is a sports medicine specialist and chiropractor with more than 15 years of experience. He earned his undergraduate degree in fitness and cardiac rehab/exercise science and biology from Ithaca College. He received his Do... Read More