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Skip Surgery

Noninvasive stretching protocol relieves pain, restores flexibility.

During his working years, Bill Lundgren owned an advertising and marketing agency, but was always a musician at heart. After he retired and relocated from New Hampshire to Florida three years ago, he began volunteering with a local arts organization, directing several musical performances.

Dr. Jeffrey P. Johnson of Johnson Medical Center in Venice treated Bill Lundgren and Pat Shehorn for lower back and neck pain using Sedative Stretching.

Bill Lundgren

Finally given a chance to live out his dream, Bill refused to let an agonizing back condition that dates back to his childhood stop him.

“When I was a kid, I fell out of a tree, landed on the sidewalk and crushed a vertebra,” shares the Rhode Island native. “I spent a few months lying flat in bed. I couldn’t get up, couldn’t do anything, in order for my back to heal.

“It has bugged me ever since, and over the last couple of years, the pain and stiffness in my lower back gradually increased. It got to a point where one area was basically solid as a rock and didn’t move at all. The muscles were frozen from guarding.

The pain in my back was moderately sharp all the time and rated seven to eight on a scale of one to ten. I’d also get radiating pains down my legs that literally put me on the floor. My legs would go out from under me and drop me to the ground.”

As Bill’s back pain intensified, he sought advice from several medical specialists, including a neurologist and neurosurgeon. However, he wasn’t satisfied with what either physician told him.

“The neurologist performed an exam and told me there were many degenerative changes happening,” Bill states. “Then I saw a neurosurgeon, and the first thing he said was, Let’s fuse all the discs. I didn’t think that was the answer, because I’ve never heard of anybody who had that done and was happy with it.

“At that point, I started looking for other alternatives, and I have a good friend who suffered with a serious shoulder problem who went to Dr. Johnson and had his special stretching procedure. She was amazed by how much better she felt after that procedure, so I decided to make an appointment with Dr. Johnson.”

Jeffrey P. Johnson, DC, is a skilled and experienced chiropractor at Johnson Medical Center in Venice. Dr. Johnson has expertise in a specialized treatment protocol called Sedative Stretching. Sedative Stretching is an expanded and comprehensive form of Manipulation Under Anesthesia, or MUA.

“Dr. Johnson is a real straight shooter,” Bill describes. “He said if he didn’t think he could help me, he wouldn’t recommend Sedative Stretching. Between his honesty and the fact that the process made sense to me when Dr. Johnson explained it, I decided to move forward with the treatment. I’m just sorry I waited so long.”

Limited Follow-Through

Pat Shehorn is a retired health care executive who continues to consult from her home in Chicago. During the chilly winter months, the snowbird leaves Illinois and travels to Florida so she can golf year-round. Pat struggled with back and neck pain for some time, but a problem with her golf swing was the final straw that sent her in search of help for her condition.

“The first clue something was wrong was when the middle finger on my right hand turned blue,” relates the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania native. “Then about a month later, it happened to a finger on my left hand. We thought it was nerve impingement in my brachial plexus under my arm. Then my golf game went horribly wrong.

“I had a huge knot between my neck and shoulder, which was achy and sore to the touch. I also had lower back pain with tingling in the bottoms of my feet. I must have a high pain threshold because, although the pain was a six or seven, I was generally just uncomfortable. Mostly, I was losing mobility and flexibility.

“As a result of the pain, tingling and stiffness, I had difficulty bending and stretching, and I was losing range of motion. I still did my daily workouts, but they just didn’t feel right. And I couldn’t follow through on my golf swing, and that affected my game.”

It was a neighbor who told Pat about Dr. Johnson. Pat was hesitant at first because she’d never been to a chiropractor. She was concerned because she thought all chiropractic adjustments were rough, and she didn’t want that. A quick call to Johnson Medical Center assured her that Dr. Johnson’s approach is gentle, so she made an appointment.

“Dr. Johnson performed a physical assessment and took x-rays, then came up with a treatment plan,” Pat recounts. “He said an alternative would be Sedative Stretching, but doing that was totally up to me. After about a month of treatment, I opted for Sedative Stretching. I was grateful Dr. Johnson was able to treat my neck and back during the same procedure.”

Scar Tissue Scourge

Many people with painful muscle and joint conditions can benefit from Sedative Stretching. Ideal candidates are those with conditions such as unresolved neck and back pain, herniated discs, spinal stenosis, sciatica, frozen shoulder, acute and chronic muscle spasm, headaches and failed back surgery syndrome. The procedure can also benefit
people who want to regain lost flexibility or those who are “sick and tired of being stiff and sore.”

“The sooner a person addresses the cause of their condition, the better,” Dr. Johnson notes. “The chronic stiffness, tightness and pain cause excessive wear and tear on the joints of the spine and
extremities, resulting in permanent degeneration and arthritis.

“People start losing flexibility after minor injuries incurred during their typical daily activities results in chronic, low-grade inflammation. Many times, this occurs in early childhood and is a long-forgotten event. Over time, these injuries develop into severe and sometimes debilitating conditions.”

Inflammation is part of the body’s natural healing process, which lays down a mesh of connective tissue, commonly known as scar tissue. Over time, layer upon layer of scar tissue can form in the muscles, tendons and ligaments around the joints, restricting the joints’ ability to move properly. These layers of scar tissue are called adhesions.

The symptoms and warning signs generally associated with adhesions include the slow and insidious loss of flexibility, as well as an increasing achiness and soreness. Most people will attribute this to normal aging. While it’s very common to become stiff and sore with age, it’s not normal.

“People will compensate how they move their bodies when this occurs, although they don’t always realize it,” Dr. Johnson points out. “This is evident everywhere while watching the way people walk, bend, twist and turn.

“Regrettably, many people wait until significant damage from excessive wear and tear has occurred before seeking appropriate care. Often, people will utilize over-the-counter and prescriptive medications, which help alleviate their symptoms. Unfortunately, this gives the patient a false sense of being cured while the underlying scar tissue continues to cause excessive damage.”

Twilight Treatment

During Sedative Stretching, the patient is put under light sedation, often called twilight sedation. With the patient relaxed, the affected joints are brought through their normal full range of motion. This frees the adhesions that have developed between the joints, causing pain.

“While the patient is sedated, we use light, comprehensive stretching techniques,” Dr. Johnson informs. “Since we don’t have to contend with tense, guarded muscles, we are able to free up the scar tissue and mobilize the joints without causing the patient any discomfort. This would be impossible to do without the use of sedation.”

A highly trained team of medical professionals coordinates the Sedative Stretching procedure. Generally, there are multiple health care providers present, including an anesthetist and several nurses. Patients usually require only one procedure. It is very rare that patients require a second procedure to fully address their condition.

Dr. Jeffrey P. Johnson of Johnson Medical Center in Venice treated Bill Lundgren and Pat Shehorn for lower back and neck pain using Sedative Stretching.

Bill has always been a musician at heart.

Typically, there are a couple of weeks of rehabilitation following the procedure itself that are designed to reinforce the increased movement obtained from the treatment. During this time, patients are instructed how to perform stretching exercises to prevent the condition from recurring.

“By following the recommended exercises, patients regain the flexibility they had decades before, and typically, they return to activities they haven’t done in years,” Dr. Johnson emphasizes. “This is truly correcting the original cause of their conditions.”

“Piece of Cake”

Bill and Pat are glad they put their trust in Dr. Johnson and Sedative Stretching. Both patients achieved significant pain relief from their procedures, enough relief to live comfortably.

“Within a few days of the Sedative Stretching procedure, my pain dropped dramatically,” Bill raves. “Instead of being a seven or eight on the pain scale, I’m consistently down to around a three, which is bearable.”

“Things are good now,” Pat agrees. “I’m back to golfing, and I can bring my golf swing all the way through. My pain is much better as well. It’s down to a one, sometimes a two, and I can manage that. It’s a piece of cake.”

Pat was especially impressed by her improved range of motion and flexibility following Sedative Stretching.

“When I first saw Dr. Johnson, he asked me how I turned my head to drive,” Pat remembers. “I told him I used my mirrors to see. But since Sedative Stretching, I can turn my head, so I can see what’s behind me when I pull out. And my neck doesn’t hurt.

“Now, after stretching, I can bend over and touch my toes. It’s another sign that I’m much more flexible. Sedative Stretching was very successful for me. I wish I’d done it sooner. If anyone’s in pain, I recommend Dr. Johnson and Johnson Medical Center.”

“Sedative Stretching is an amazing treatment,” Bill enthuses. “I definitely recommend it to anybody who’s got spine problems. Who wants to go under the knife if you don’t have to? And it’s a lot easier if you can find somebody like Dr. Johnson. I wasted a lot of time with those other doctors, but not so with Dr. Johnson. I’m a believer!”

On Your Toes

Those shoes may match the outfit, but are they good for your feet?

One of the most common foot ailments that I see walk though my door are bunions,” explains board-certified podiatric surgeon Robert P. Dunne, DPM. A bunion is an unnatural, bony hump that forms at the base of the big toe where it attaches to the foot. Often, the big toe deviates toward the other toes.Those shoes may match the outfit, but are they good for your feet?

“Sometimes, this particular foot deformity is genetic; other times, it can be related to an injury to the foot or a congenital issue [a deformity present at birth],” explains Dr. Dunne. “Arthritis can play a role, along with improperly fitting shoes and high heels.” 

Bunion Symptoms

There are several symptoms to look for when diagnosing bunions.

“A bulging bump could be evident at the base of the big toe,” describes Dr. Dunne. “There may also be some swelling, redness and soreness in the area of the big toe’s joint. Other signs include a thickening of the skin at the base of the big toe, limitation in movement, pain that comes and goes, and corns and calluses developing.”

According to Dr. Dunne, people are intimidated by treatment for bunions because they have heard negative stories regarding surgical correction. “Our patients come first, and we recommend they take action now if they have a problem. Surgery is not the only option. Alternate treatments are available.”

When to See a Doctor?

“More often than not, a patient will put off treatment until surgical correction is the only option,” says Dr. Dunne. Here are some of the signs that you should be aware of:

Difficulty with movement of the big toe

A bump at the side of your big toe

Issues with shoes fitting properly

Big toe pain that is constant or intermittent

The formation of corns or calluses

Redness in the area at the bottom of the big toe

Once you make an appointment with your doctor, it is helpful to know what questions to ask, including “What is the cause of my foot pain, and is this a long-term or short-term problem?” This is another question to ask: “Is surgery right for me, or is there a conservative treatment that will help?”  These are useful questions to help you make decisions about your care.

“Occasionally, a bunion formation left untreated can cause additional ailments to arise,” warns Dr. Dunne. “These can include bursitis, hammertoe formations and metatarsalgia, which is pain and inflammation in the ball of the foot.”

Treatment Options

“For a bunion, our typical treatment regimen will be determined by the severity of the deformity, along with the individual needs of the patient,” explains Dr. Dunne.

“Again, surgery is not always the only treatment option a patient has. Treatment should be tailored to the patient’s needs.” 

Some conservative treatments include:

The application of ice

Orthotics (over-the-counter or custom-molded)

Medications to reduce inflammation

Padding and splinting of the area

Changes to better-fitting or more appropriate shoes

Rehabilitation time varies per patient and type of surgical procedure. As always, the patient’s individual needs come first, and treatment should reflect those needs.

Lake Washington Foot & Ankle is a comprehensive podiatric medicine clinic, offering treatment for everything from ankle sprains to hammertoes.

“We treat ingrown toenails, warts, dermatitis, ankle and heel pain, tendonitis and neuromas,” assures Dr. Dunne. “We also do clinical trials for onychomycosis [fungal toenails], as well as studies on diabetic ulcers, in an effort to find better and more effective treatments for these and other ailments.”

Fountain of Youth

Senior not feeling his age after ED therapy.

construction worker all his life, Emory Allen, 74, spent the last few years of his career running his own business and working for a large contracting company, from which he retired. The North Carolina native, who spent his young-adult years in Southern France with the Army, always felt proud when clients turned to him for his construction expertise.

Senior not feeling his age after ED therapy

Emory Allen

“I had a lot of fun doing construction, so I started my own construction company,” Emory recounts. “The name of it was Professional Industrial Contractors. Clients I did work for included Coors® Brewery, Gerber® Baby Food and Frito-Lay®. I also worked on several ethanol plants, a few bakeries and many other projects.”

As Emory got older, he faced a few common health issues that sometimes affect men as they age, including prostate disorders. In Emory’s case, treatment for those disorders contributed to a frustrating problem – erectile dysfunction (ED).

“I hadn’t been able to do anything in the bedroom since I had prostate surgery fifteen years ago,” Emory confirms. “My wife was very understanding because we have more than sex going on in our relationship. We’re best friends.”

“That’s true,” Emory’s wife confirms. “The sex wasn’t as good as it was in the past, but there’s more to our relationship than sex. That made it easier for me to be understanding about Emory’s problem.”

For years, the couple lived with an incomplete sex life, then Emory learned about a treatment that offered significant improvement without pills or surgery. The treatment was provided by Robert C. Lupo, DC, of Physical Medicine Center in Tampa.

“I was already a patient of Dr. Lupo for chiropractic services,” Emory relates. “One day, I was in the waiting room and saw an article in Florida Health Care News about Dr. Lupo and his GAINSWave® therapy, so I asked him about it. He said it works like the treatment that’s used to break up kidney stones, except that it breaks up the plaque that builds up in the blood vessels of the penis.”

“GAINSWave is a unique treatment that uses sound-wave technology to clear the tiny microvessels in the urogenital region,” Dr. Lupo describes. “This increases circulation to the penis, which improves sensitivity and the quality of the erection, intensifying the entire sexual experience.”

Emory was given a sample GAINSWave treatment during his initial appointment at Physical Medicine Center. Emory later returned for five subsequent treatments, during which he says, “Things started looking up.”

The Bedroom and Beyond

Sexual health can affect overall well-being, so the impact of untreated erectile dysfunction, as well as decreased sensitivity and performance, can extend beyond the bedroom.

“Everyone wants to feel good, be healthy and have great sex,” Dr. Lupo reports. “In fact, studies have shown that good sexual energy does many things for health and well-being. These include decreasing stress, providing a stronger-functioning immune system, improving sleep, increasing self-esteem and happiness, and much more.”

Difficulties in the bedroom are not limited to men in their 70s, such as Emory. Even men in their 30s and 40s can begin to lose sensitivity or have trouble achieving and maintaining the strong erections necessary for great sex. It’s important that men experiencing these symptoms seek the advice of a medical professional.

“Trouble with erections is a sign that blood flow issues, hormonal changes or other serious conditions are beginning to develop,” Dr. Lupo notes. “We offer bio-identical hormone therapy as well as GAINSWave to get men suffering with treatable conditions back on track and working like they’re supposed to.”

Dr. Lupo stresses that while GAINSWave is an excellent treatment for men with ED, it is also very effective for achieving sensitivity and volume improvement in younger men.

“Some younger men come in to tune-up their sexual functioning and improve their experience,” he says. “They simply want to keep their bodies in good working order, which leads to better performance in the bedroom. These men report that GAINSWave provides a very dramatic result.”

GAINSWave helps improve a man’s sexual health in another way as well. It also stimulates the growth of nerve tissue vital for increasing sensitivity and achieving and maintaining healthy erections.

Back in Time

Men have experienced a renewed ability for healthier erections after only a few GAINSWave treatments, Dr. Lupo points out. Just two painless treatments per week over a three-week period are all most men need to restore or improve erectile function.

“GAINSWave’s ability to improve blood flow, increase new vascularization and increase nerve sensitivity in the urogenital region has been pretty phenomenal,” the doctor asserts. “The erection ability is stronger, longer, better and more impressive. It’s taking men back to more youthful times in their lives without the necessity for medications.”

The noninvasive therapy is also used to successfully treat a painful syndrome that causes curvature of the penis called Peyronie’s disease that is the result of scar tissue.

Dr. Lupo says GAINSWave uses the same technology that has been effective for years in the US and Europe to treat plantar fasciitis; heel, knee and elbow pain; scar tissue, tendonitis and connective tissue injuries.

“GAINSWave emits concentrated blasts of sound waves akin to ultrasound or sonar technology,” he explains. “These sound waves travel faster than the speed of sound, and when applied through the correct number of pulses, frequency and energy, they can have a positive effect on tissue to restore blood flow and nerve sensitivity.

Senior not feeling his age after ED therapy

Emory has renewed vim and vigor.

“We’re very encouraged by how GAINSWave has been used to treat hundreds of patients without harmful side effects. Any man who wants to restore youthful performance should call us to explore this option.”

Second Honeymoon

Men gain the most benefit from GAINSWave when they finish the full course of treatment. Many men, however, experience positive effects after just a few treatments. Emory was one of those men who noticed benefits from GAINSWave early on.

“After two or three treatments, I started to see a difference,” he recalls. “I began having some sensation down there, the blood started flowing and things started getting better, so now I’m doing very well for an old man.

“I’m almost seventy-five years old, and everything works! The GAINSWave must have broken up all of those calcium plaque deposits in my penis because everything is up now, and my wife is happy.”

“It’s wonderful,” his wife says. “Our sex life is back to the way it was years ago.”

Emory credits his excellent results to Dr. Lupo. He thinks very highly of the doctor and trusts him completely. Thanks to
Dr. Lupo, Emory always has a good experience at Physical Medicine Center.

“Dr. Lupo is a good, honest man,” Emory states. “He has high morals. His good character means a lot to me. He’s very good, and so is the GAINSWave treatment. I recommend them both.”

Satisfying Nonsurgical Pain Relief

Pain-free spinal decompression therapy relieves lower back, neck pain.

Most people join the Peace Corps when they’re young, when their uncertainty regarding which path to follow in life meshes with their desire to see the world and make an impact on a small, needy community someplace far, far away.

Not Ted Mooney.

Ted Mooney and Allison* both found relief from their debilitating neck and back pain through spinal decompression.

In his late 50s, Ted joined the Peace Corps and became the country director for Lesotho and Uganda.

Ted, now 67, joined the Peace Corps when he was in his late 50s, long after he’d built and sold a scientific instrument sales company, retired for the first time and rejoined the workforce as a consultant for a group of small tech companies.

“I tend to re-invent myself every six to eight years,” says Ted, a mechanical engineer who also holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration. “My job with the Peace Corps was country director of Lesotho, a small country inside South Africa.

“I then became the country director for Uganda. In both places, I was primarily responsible for the health and safety of the volunteers and for working with the local ministries to find the productive things that would help us make a difference in the community.”

Ted moved on from the Peace Corps in 2011 and retired for good last October. At the time of his retirement, he was still quite active, swimming, kayaking and bird-watching on a regular basis. That is until back problems crept up on him.

“I’ve had back problems throughout the course of my life, ever since I was in my teens, but I never paid much attention to them,” Ted says. “Then one morning a few months back, shortly after I’d retired, I woke up and could barely get out of bed.

“I thought at first that it would be just as it always had been before, that it would eventually clear up, but this time, it just kept getting worse. After a couple of weeks, I could barely even get out of the house.

“I tried taking a walk with my wife one day, and I couldn’t even get one hundred meters down the road. I couldn’t go outside and do any of the bird-watching I love to do because it hurt just to bring the binoculars up to my eyes.

“It was bizarre how much pain I was in, and after a third week of that, I thought my life, as I understood it, was going away because of this back pain. That’s when I decided I needed to get it taken care of.”

Ted’s fear of spending his second retirement as a shut-in prompted an internet search for a physician to treat his agonizing back pain. The search led him to Tyler Albrecht, DC, at St. Augustine Spine Center.

The goal of the staff at St. Augustine Spine Center is to help patients suffering from severe and chronic back pain, neck pain and peripheral neuropathy return to a pain-free, active lifestyle using the most advanced nonsurgical, drug-free procedures available.

Their work always begins with a thorough examination of the patient, and in the case of Ted, Dr. Albrecht’s initial examination revealed that the constant stabbing pain he felt in his back was radiating into his right hip and leg.

“In addition to Ted’s back pain, he was also having some tingling and itching along his right thigh, and the pain would get worse when he would do any walking or standing,” Dr. Albrecht reports. “It was making him limp and was interfering with his activities around the house.

“He could no longer go to the gym, which he had been doing three or four times a week. He was even having trouble sleeping. He had tried ice and heat treatments and taken some anti-inflammatories and even used a TENS device, but he found no relief.”

Based on his findings, Dr. Albrecht ordered an MRI of Ted’s back. The MRI showed Ted was suffering from degenerative disc disease and that the primary cause of his pain was four bulging lumbar discs that resulted in irritation of the nerves in that area.

The severity of his problem came as a bit of a shock to Ted, who agreed immediately to follow Dr. Albrecht’s recommended course for recovery, which called for him to receive a full series of spinal decompression treatments.

Time to Decompress

Spinal decompression is a pain-free, FDA-cleared treatment that works to restore herniated or bulging discs to a healthier state, thus relieving pain. The decompression procedure works by reversing the pressure on the injured discs, allowing them to heal, rather than just trying to cover up the pain with injections or medications.

“The treatment is performed while the patient lies on a specialized table that
gently pulls on the two vertebrae on either side of the affected disc, producing a vacuum effect,” Dr. Albrecht informs. “This allows bulging material and nutrients to be drawn back into the disc over time, which allows it to rehydrate and heal naturally.

“Advanced technology and computerized load sensors combine to create a gentle, pain-free treatment that avoids the muscle spasm or guarding reflex that is commonly triggered with rudimentary traction or inversion devices.”

Patients in a spinal decompression program are treated three times a week for about seven weeks. Each decompression treatment lasts about 30 minutes, after which most patients are treated with a combination of other modalities.

Those modalities include manual therapy, rehabilitative exercises, chiropractic care, ice, electrical stimulation and laser therapy, all of which help to speed up the healing process and are part of the typical disc rehabilitation program at St. Augustine Spine Center.

“One of the things that I really appreciate about Dr. Albrecht was how informative he was,” Ted says. “He told me everything about the treatment before we got started – how it was developed and everything – and that was really helpful.

“He even told me how it was important to make sure that I drink sixty ounces of water every day because hydrating the discs and the area around the spine is one of the keys to the spinal regeneration process.

“It made me feel very confident going into the treatment, which lasts for about thirty minutes on the table. Then, when you’re done, they do some manual therapy on you and have you do some additional stretches and things like that.”

At first, Ted couldn’t do many of the post-treatment stretching exercises. Over time, though, he was able to incorporate those stretches into his routine, the results of which have led to what Dr. Albrecht describes as a full resolution of his symptoms.

“When Ted started, his average pain level was seven on a scale of zero to ten, and occasionally, it would go up to a nine,” Dr. Albrecht says. “But by the time we completed his treatment, his average pain was down to zero.

“He is no longer limping, and he has gone back to the gym and is working out again. His sleep is no longer being interrupted, and he is back to doing all the normal activities he was doing before. He’s had really good success with his treatment.”

Ted concurs, saying his treatment has made him “a very happy camper.” He’s a lighter camper, too, adding that his return to the gym has resulted in a loss of at least ten pounds of weight gained during the time he was inactive.

“This program really works, because I am able to do all the things I like to do again,” Ted enthuses. “The bottom line is, I feel great again, and I thank Dr. Albrecht for that.

“I say this all the time, but he saved my life. He really did, and that’s why I’ve already recommended him to some friends, and I know of one who has already gone to see him and raves about him the same way that I do.”

Worth a Try

Unlike Ted, Allison* hasn’t reached retirement age just yet, but at 63, she says she “can see the other side, and it looks pretty good.” Unfortunately, Allison’s view of what lay ahead in retirement didn’t look all that promising just a few months ago.

“I had been dealing with some serious neck problems for about two years, and nothing I was doing was making it any better,” she says. “At first, I was going to a chiropractor and doing some physical therapy, which helped for a while, but it never lasted.

“Then about a year and a half ago, I went to an orthopedic surgeon. He was telling me we could try doing some cortisone shots, but if they didn’t work, I was looking at having surgery. That just frightened the heck out of me.

“I had disc surgery a long time ago on my back, and going through that was frightening enough. But of all the surgeries you can have, neck surgery to me is the most frightening. That was my ultimate last resort.”

Allison never had to seriously consider her ultimate last resort, thanks in part to her husband, who started looking through a copy of Florida Health Care News while he and Allison were waiting to be seated for dinner one night.

“He was reading this article about spinal decompression and told me to take a look at it,” Allison remembers. “The article was all about spinal decompression and St. Augustine Spine Center, and we thought, Why not give this a try? What have we got to lose?

“When Allison came in, she was having not just constant neck pain but constant upper back pain as well. She was also getting about ten headaches a month,” Dr. Albrecht reports. “As you might expect, those problems were really affecting her lifestyle.

“Allison is a very active person. She likes to play tennis and golf, does some weightlifting to stay in shape and rides a bicycle and walks her dog. All those things were being limited by her neck and upper back pain.”

After reviewing an MRI and learning of Allison’s previous attempts to rid herself of her neck and back pain, which included receiving massage therapy and taking muscle relaxers, Dr. Albrecht suggested she try spinal decompression as an alternative to surgery.

“The MRI showed degenerative disc disease and disc bulging at three levels in the mid-to-lower part of her neck,”
Dr. Albrecht reports. “In that area of the spine, the normal diameter of the spinal canal should be twelve to fourteen millimeters. Hers was narrowed to seven, resulting in spinal stenosis. That made her a great candidate for spinal decompression.”

Proof Positive

Anxious to get off the muscle relaxers and resume her active lifestyle, Allison took Dr. Albrecht up on his recommendation and began the same spinal decompression program that Ted did in July of last year. The results, she says, have been miraculous.Ted Mooney and Allison* both found relief from their debilitating neck and back pain through spinal decompression.

“It’s unbelievable what the decompression therapy has done for me,” Allison exudes. “Through that and some stretching exercises that I’ve incorporated into my workout, I feel two hundred percent better than I did this time a year ago. Even the headaches are gone.”

Allison initially thought her headaches were the result of some severe sinus and asthma issues, but Dr. Albrecht believes their disappearance is proof they were actually being caused by Allison’s neck and upper back problems.

“By the time Allison completed the spinal decompression therapy, she had gone a month without a headache,” Dr. Albrecht says. “That told us they were actually coming from her neck, because we didn’t treat her for allergies or sinus issues at all.

“And that makes sense, because pressure on the neck and the spinal cord in that area so close to the back of the head can easily cause inflammation and the muscles in that area to tighten, which can irritate the head and lead to those headaches.”

It’s not just because of the spinal decompression treatments that Allison is feeling so much better. Allison says Dr. Albrecht also gave her some good advice regarding proper posture that has helped her keep the pain at bay as well.

“I work as a category manager for a food broker, and I sit at a computer all day analyzing data,” she says. “It turns out that I’ve been sitting at my computer the wrong way, and that has probably contributed to my neck problems.

“Dr. Albrecht suggested I have a co-worker take a random picture of me at my desk, and in the picture, I’m sitting on my legs all hunched over and turning my neck the wrong way. When I saw that, I thought, No wonder. I’m really not helping myself here.

“So, Dr. Albrecht gave me a diagram that shows me exactly how I should be sitting at my desk, and that has helped me, too. I also bought a posture pump like the one Dr. Albrecht has in his office, and I use that twice a day, and it has done a lot for me as well.

“Dr. Albrecht even told me that just getting up from my desk and walking around the office once every hour will make a difference and so I try to do that now. It’s why I highly recommend them and the spinal decompression for anyone who is facing neck or back surgery and thinks that’s their last resort. It’s not. There’s more you can do for yourself that will get you feeling right again, and I’m proof of it.”

*Patient’s name withheld at her request.

Up, Up and Away

Noninvasive balloon system helps mother lose post-pregnancy weight.

After delivering her second child six years ago, Cindy* had a difficult time losing the weight she gained during her pregnancy.

“I have two daughters, and after the first pregnancy, I was able to lose the weight pretty quickly,” Cindy shares. “But the weight from the second pregnancy didn’t come off anywhere near as easily.

“I tried every diet I could think of, and at best I would lose ten pounds, then turn around and gain it all back again. As a wife and a mother, I was trying to do it all and carried a lot of stress. I think that affected my metabolism to a certain point. But, I was also making the wrong food choices. I ate a lot of sweets and unhealthy foods.”

At 190 pounds, the five-foot, three-inch Cindy says she became desperate to make a change. She set a goal to lose around 50 pounds.

“I wanted to look and feel better about myself,” she says. “I am raising two girls, and I want them to see their mom healthy and active.”

Cindy says she talked with a friend who underwent gastric sleeve surgery, but she did not feel that was the best option for her.

“My husband wasn’t on board with that either,” Cindy shares. “So, we went online and did some research and read about the Obalon® Balloon System. It sounded interesting to me because it did not require any kind of surgery. I started searching for doctors in our area who offered the procedure, and I found Manatee Weight Loss Center at Manatee Memorial Hospital.

Are You Overweight?

For people such as Cindy who haven’t found success with conventional forms of dieting, weightloss procedures to reduce stomach size are often a proven method for overcoming obesity.

The Obalon Balloon System is available at Manatee Memorial Hospital, where it is performed by Stelios Rekkas, MD, FACS, a fellowship-trained bariatric surgeon. The procedure is ideal for patients who are overweight.

“The majority of the weightloss procedures we offer here are for people who are about one hundred pounds above their ideal body weight,” explains Dr. Rekkas. “Those surgeries involve general anesthesia and a brief stay in the hospital. This is the first outpatient, noninvasive procedure we offer that provides significant weight loss between forty to sixty pounds.

Cindy was our first patient to undergo the Obalon balloon procedure, which I think is a game changer when it comes to weight loss. She was an ideal candidate, as she was about fifty pounds above her ideal body weight. She just needed the right tool to help her find success.

Obalon Balloon System

The Obalon Balloon System requires patients to swallow a pill containing a small balloon. An x-ray is then taken to make sure the balloon is in the right position. The balloon is then filled with a gas similar to nitrogen gas. After three weeks, patients return and get a second balloon and after nine weeks, they get a third balloon.

“Each balloon shrinks the space available in the stomach and as a result, the patient eats less,” Dr. Rekkas explains. “On average, patients lose about three times the weight they would normally lose on their own.

“One of the beautiful things about this system is there are no incisions, no general anesthesia, no scarring and the balloons are removed through endoscopy after six months,” concludes Dr. Rekkas. “With these balloons, patients eat a little bit of food and get full much faster.

“We were the first hospital in the state to offer the Obalon Balloon System,” shares

Dr. Rekkas. “This is a revolutionary new product, and we are proud to offer it at Manatee Memorial Hospital and Manatee Weight Loss Center.”

Dr. Rekkas emphasizes that the program is about more than a pill.

“I want to stress that what we do here is not just about a specific weight loss procedure,” he explains. “We educate every person about diet and exercise. It is an all-encompassing program.

“Each patient receives a customized plan, including diet and exercise. The balloons are the training wheels. It is a game-changing tool to help them get started. As long as they incorporate the diet and exercise long term, they will keep the weight off.”   

Look Good, Feel Great

Weight loss carries with it profound benefits for better health.A mom looks to lose 50 pounds through a noninvasive weight loss procedure offered at Manatee Weight Loss Center.

“We see really good improvements in sleep apnea, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Instead of just giving medications to lower blood pressure or control diabetes, a lot of these problems go away or improve markedly through weight loss,” says Dr. Rekkas. “We’ve seen patients get off their diabetic and hypertensive medications and sleep apnea machines. Also, great improvement is seen in patients with arthritis.”

Cindy says the Obalon Balloon System has allowed her to take an important step toward achieving her weight loss goal of 50 pounds and is confident she can keep the weight off, because she has already noticed a change in her eating habits.

“I used to always want candy or dessert before, but now, I no longer want sugar,” she says. “It’s really amazing how your body reacts to this system and how that in turn changes how you think and feel about yourself.”

“I am on my way to a smaller size; I can feel it. With this system and proper exercise, I know I can maintain the weight loss. This has been a good decision, and I am really happy with
Dr. Rekkas and all the staff at the center.
This is changing my life!”

*Patient’s name withheld at her request.

Repair Bone Loss

A once weekly, 15-minute strengthening program can rebuild bone.

After suffering for years with endometriosis, Shirley* and her husband turned to infertility treatments to help them conceive.

A once weekly, 15-minute strengthening program can rebuild bone

During an OsteoStrong workout, patients apply pressure on patented equipment designed to stimulate the body’s natural impulse to rebuild bone.

While those treatments were not successful, Shirley and her husband still got the child they always wanted through adoption.

In the aftermath of the infertility treatments, however, Shirley was left with a serious side effect resulting from prolonged use of infertility drugs – osteoporosis.

Bones are made of tissue that is constantly broken down and replaced. But when new bone creation does not keep up with degeneration, osteopenia and osteoporosis can occur.

About 54 million Americans have osteoporosis and low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis. Breaking a bone is a serious complication of osteoporosis, especially as we get older. Osteoporotic bone breaks are most likely to occur in the hip, spine or wrist, but other bones can break too. In addition to causing permanent pain, osteoporosis causes some to lose height. When osteoporosis affects vertebrae, or the bones of the spine, it often leads to a stooped or hunched posture.

“I had a friend of mine who was a nurse advise me to get a bone density screening because she knew that many women on the same infertility drug had severe bone loss,” Shirley recalls. “So, I had my first bone scan performed when I was thirty-eight.

“The results indicated I was osteopenic, which means I had early onset of osteoporosis.”

That was 13 years ago.

“At that time, doctors told me to do weight-bearing exercises and increase my calcium and Vitamin D intake. They had no answers and no real plan.”

When a friend’s mother died of osteoporosis, Shirley vowed she would not succumb to the condition herself.

“I have a child, and there is just no way that after everything I’ve been through I will allow osteoporosis to win,” Shirley says. “It isn’t going to happen like that for me.”

Despite joining a gym and following a rigorous exercise regimen, she continued to see her bone density scans get worse each year.

“My numbers kept going down,” Shirley recalls. “I felt like there had to be something out there that would help.”

In 2015, through online research, Shirley found a unique program called OsteoStrong that helps rebuild bone through once-a-week, 15-minute sessions using specialized strengthening equipment.

“It is difficult to explain the difference between our equipment and that used at a traditional gym,” educates Marc Cannon, owner of OsteoStrong in Sarasota. “This equipment is isometric, which means tension is developed without contraction of the muscle. There is no force pushing against you, which means that you create the force. On the leg press, for example, I’ve had ladies in their eighties weighing one hundred pounds who can press a thousand pounds. Because it is isometric, it is different.”

To understand the difference he describes, Marc invites people to come in and try the equipment for themselves.

“We offer one free session so that people can see what we mean by isometric,” Marc shares. “They have the opportunity to use the equipment and see exactly what it is like.”

A Proven Solution

“Osteoporosis is a silent disease that most people are unaware they have until they fracture a bone,” educates Marc. “Statistically, one in two women and one in four men over age fifty will have an osteoporosis-related fracture in their lifetime.”

Marc says OsteoStrong is a proven, effective, natural solution to reverse bone loss for all age groups. “This is an amazing concept that culminated after twelve years of research that looked into the body’s own adaptive response to growing new bone and muscle structure and improving the density of the bones we have.”

Marc loves to share stories that highlight the program’s long-term value.

“I met Shirley at an OsteoStrong conference in Albuquerque and after hearing her story, we connected instantly because in my view, her story is a success,” Marc says. “The program utilizes a concept called osteogenic loading, which is a fifteen-minute, once-a-week,
resistance-based session that increases bone density, prevents fractures and strengthens muscle tissue.”

Shirley admits that initially, she was uncertain about how well a 15-minute workout, once a week, could rebuild bone.

“At first, I was skeptical, but after I read a lot about it and researched its success, I was convinced,” she says. “The patient applies pressure on the patented equipment through short, acute activities that stimulate the body’s natural impulse to rebuild bone and tissue loss. Once the tissue growth process has been triggered, the body will naturally rebuild tissue and bone.”

Sessions are deliberately scheduled once a week.

“Studies have determined that doing an OsteoStrong session more than once a week doesn’t promote any additional benefit,” Marc explains. “Overall, studies have found that OsteoStrong improves people’s bone density by about seven percent a year.”

Better Late Than Never

Shirley knows that had she found OsteoStrong years earlier, her bone loss would not have been as substantial.A once weekly, 15-minute strengthening program can rebuild bone

“I’ve already lost twenty percent of my bone in my hip and twenty four percent of bone in my arm,” Shirley explains. “If I were to lose another twenty-five to thirty percent, I would have the bones of a significantly older woman who could have a fracture at an early age.

“In the first six months, I had a significant bone increase in my hips because of the OsteoStrong program,” she continues. “I was in tears when my latest bone scan results showed that increase. I had not had a gain in twelve years.”

Shirley’s life has been so dramatically improved because of OsteoStrong that she and her husband invested in a franchise.

“My husband and I were looking for a business venture, and after experiencing OsteoStrong, and with my own personal situation, we decided to buy a franchise ourselves.

“The important thing is, my numbers are increasing now, and I owe it all to OsteoStrong,” she says. “It’s been a miracle for me and has changed my life!”

Because of her significant improvement in her bones, Shirley says she likely will start having bone scans every other year once she turns 55.

“We’ve already had success stories in our center even though it’s been open for a short amount of time,” Shirley shares. “I tell women who come to our center here – we can reverse bone loss and you don’t have to be in fear of having a fracture.”

It is important for those who suffer from osteoporosis to consider that OsteoStrong is a program that caters to all age groups.

“Osteoporosis is not just something that only happens to old people. We have clients from young to old and everything in between. We have a lot of women in our center that are younger than I was when I was diagnosed.

“Men aren’t immune either,” she adds. “When they start losing their testosterone, their bone loss becomes more rapid.

“OsteoStrong wants to help educate people about bone loss. The framework is the most important part of your body and you need to take care of it and be aware of changes to it.”

While there are many factors in a person’s life that can cause osteoporosis, thankfully programs like OsteoStrong can help a person reverse the damage.

“OsteoStrong has been a miracle for me and has changed my life!,” Shirley raves.

*Patient’s name withheld at her request.

Improving Memory and Reversing Chronic Inflammation

Innovative treatments alleviate arthritis pain, enhance memory.

As a personal trainer, Pamela Kirscher taught others how to keep their bodies working optimally. But she became increasingly frustrated with her own body as it showed signs of escalating dysfunction.Pamela Kirscher received treatment for arthritis, memory loss and a viral infection using nonsurgical regenerative therapy techniques.

“I had arthritis in my left ankle, which I broke in 1980,” Pamela shares. “It caused a stabbing pain that made me actually buckle over. I also broke my right ankle twice. The original break happened when I stepped backward into an empty swimming pool that was under construction.

“My orthopedic doctor told me he could inject my ankles with steroids, but I’d have to get injections every three months. When I first became a patient at Advanced Rejuvenation I started getting prolotherapy.”

Prolotherapy is a nonsurgical procedure during which a solution containing dextrose, a natural sugar, and lidocaine are injected into the damaged area to stimulate healing. The treatment helped Pamela for a while, but her body continued to let her down.

In 2006, Pamela broke her right foot when a horse inadvertently stepped on it. Later, she noticed she was having some issues with memory loss.

“Not only did I have arthritis in both ankles, I also got it in my foot,” she declares. “There was a period of time when I could barely walk. Every step was like a sharp knife through my foot. All I really wanted was to be able to walk on the beach.

“I was also having memory problems. I have the ApoE4 Alzheimer’s gene, which makes me thirty percent more likely to develop the disease. I could’ve just dismissed the memory loss as senior moments, but I wanted to address it. I wanted to maintain my memory.”

As time went on, Pamela’s arthritis affected other areas of her body as well. She finally had enough and sought treatment at Advanced Rejuvenation in Sarasota. Jeffrey Sack, MD, chose two innovative therapy options to treat Pamela’s varied symptoms.

Exosomes: Stem Cells

The specialized treatment options Dr. Sack chose for Pamela included exosome therapy and ten-pass hyperbaric ozone therapy. These unique treatments are effective at treating the core causes of virtually all diseases, which is chronic inflammation.

Pamela was diagnosed with a seronegative arthropathy that resembles rheumatoid arthritis as well as early onset Alzheimer’s disease. The arthritis disfigured her hands and also involved her spine and ankles.

“To treat all of Pamela’s conditions, we utilized ten-pass hyperbaric ozone and stem cell exosomes,” reports Dr. Sack.

Stem cell therapy has been used in various medical disciplines for years. Stem cells are the body’s building blocks, the foundation of all tissue and organs. They can be used to regenerate cartilage, tendon, muscle and new tissue in the heart, brain, shoulders, wrists, spine, pelvis, feet, etc.

“It’s been the prevailing thought that once stem cells are introduced into the body, they migrate to the injured area, transform into the needed cells, such as cartilage, ligament or nerve cells, and proliferate from there,” Dr. Sack notes. “Research has determined that’s not what happens at all. Stem cells are actually more like messengers.

“In reality, stem cells go to the injured area, open up and spill out tiny vesicles called exosomes. The exosomes contain information that triggers two critical functions. The first function is to clean up the injured area.”

When the body is trying to heal from a disease or injury, whether it’s a stroke or an arthritic knee, it must first clear out the old, weak and damaged tissue. Dr. Sack uses the analogy of remodeling a bathroom. That can’t be done properly without removing the old tile and bathtub. In the body, old worn out tissue must be removed before new tissue can be regenerated.

“The second function triggered by the exosomes is to instruct existing, healthy cells to enter a trophic, or growth phase,” Dr. Sack observes. “This is a long-term change into a more youthful state. It’s when cell regeneration occurs.”

Terrific Ten-Pass

The second treatment Dr. Sack used for Pamela was ten-pass hyperbaric ozone therapy. During this treatment, a small amount of blood is drawn from the patient’s body into specialized equipment from Germany. It is then mixed with ozone and returned to the patient’s veins.

“Historically, ozone was used with one-pass procedures, but the developers of the ten-pass equipment have made it so a much higher amount of ozone can be safely administered to the patient,” Dr. Sack explains. “Ten-pass is ten times the treatment of a single pass procedure. The other component of ten-pass is that the ozone is delivered under pressure. That’s the hyperbaric part.

“When ozone is exposed to blood, it does several important things. The first thing it does is sterilize the blood. Ozone’s been shown to be effective on just about every known virus, mold and bacteria. Ozone is hundreds of times stronger than bleach at killing bacteria and viruses. Still, it’s safe when given at the correct dosage.”

The second thing ozone does is charge the immune system. When there are chronic infections, the immune system releases cells to destroy the offending pathogens. With ten-pass, some of the pathogens are killed directly by the ozone, but it also throws the immune system into high gear, killing the rest of the pathogens and clearing up infections. It has been beneficial for many autoimmune conditions as well.

Another thing that occurs when ozone is mixed with blood is the creation of compounds known as ozonites. These ozonites travel through the body and are instrumental in improving anti oxidant responses.

Intravenous ozone has proven to be a strong activator of mitogenesis – the creation of mitochondria. Mitochondria are the powerhouses of cells. They convert oxygen and glucose into energy. Mitochondrial dysfunction is linked to a host of disorders, from cancer to chronic inflammation to degenerative neurologic disorders.

Pamela Kirscher received treatment for arthritis, memory loss and a viral infection using nonsurgical regenerative therapy techniques.

Pamela Kirscher

“One-third of the body’s weight is mitochondria,” Dr. Sack expounds. “The body is constantly scavenging and cleaning out old, weak mitochondria and creating new, healthy mitochondria. Improving mitochondrial function improves symptoms of everything from heart disease, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease as well as other neurological conditions and chronic infections.

“There is no more effective stimuli to the body to clean out old dysfunctional mitochondria and make new mitochondria than intravenous ozone and especially ten-pass.”

Treatments like exosome therapy and ten-pass hyperbaric ozone therapy can be done separately or together, as in Pamela’s case. When used together, they often work synergistically.

“We call that the entourage effect,” Dr. Sack informs. “That’s when combining modalities creates a better outcome than using one alone. In these cases, one plus one may equal four instead of two. The modalities are synergistic. They multiply the benefits.”

“New Lease on Life”

Pamela was amazed by the results of her treatments at Advanced Rejuvenation. The exosome therapy and ten-pass hyperbaric ozone therapy turned her world around.

“I have a new lease on life,” Pamela raves. “All I wanted was to walk on the beach, and after a short time, I was walking twenty to thirty minutes on the beach. I was no longer restricted in my activities. I could go to the store when before I couldn’t do that. I had my independence back again.

“We did a follow up memory test called CNS vitals which showed a seventy-five percent improvement, and I can tell my memory has definitely improved. I don’t have the memory issues I had before. Reducing the inflammation in my body and getting more oxygen to my brain has helped. I’ve noticed that I’m a lot more clear-headed now.

“They’re doing so many amazing things at Advanced Rejuvenation,” Pamela enthuses. “I highly recommend them.”

Bombard Belly Fat

Drop stubborn pounds and inches while lying on your back.

Gregory Gollhofer is a smart man. Not only did he work in information technology for 37 years, he also fled the brutal cold of the Brooklyn, New York winters and moved to balmy Florida, where he’s lived for the past 34 years.

Gregory Gollhofer and Lizette (alias) lost pounds and inches using Dr. Tred’s Ultimate Laser-Assisted Weight Loss System at Slim Body Laser Spa in Stuart.

Gregory Gollhofer

For most of his life, however, Gregory struggled to lose weight, especially the extra fat on his belly and chest. But he was smart enough to know when to look in a new direction when fancy diets didn’t work.

“At one point, I weighed two hundred and twenty-nine pounds, was wearing size forty pants and extra-large shirts, and even they didn’t feel comfortable on me,” Gregory reveals. “So, I tried one of those big diet programs.

“I lost fifty pounds, but the weight came right back. I tried to convince myself that program was the way to go, so I went on it a second time, and the same thing happened, so I learned that diet program really didn’t work for me.

“Then, I went to a dietitian, and she taught me how to eat, what to eat and what portions to eat, which was excellent. But following that meal plan was too complex, so I didn’t maintain my weight loss.”

When his attempts at dieting failed, Gregory didn’t give up. He remained open to new approaches to losing weight and eventually discovered a unique option in an unlikely place – his doctor’s waiting room.

While waiting for an appointment, Gregory picked up a copy of Florida Health Care News and read an article about Tred Rissacher, DC, and the Ultimate Laser-Assisted Weight Loss System he offers at Slim Body Laser Spa in Stuart.

“When I read the article, I said, This is something I’ve never thought about before. Maybe I should look into it and learn more about it,” Gregory remembers, “So, I made an appointment for a consultation to see what was involved with the program.

“My first impression of the spa was excellent. The people who work with you are very professional. Then I met with
Dr. Tred, and I was impressed by his knowledge. He explained how everything worked.

“Before meeting with Dr. Tred, whenever I thought about lasers, I thought of something destructive. But Dr. Tred explained that his laser system is designed to heal the body and could help me lose weight.”

Dr. Tred’s Ultimate Laser-Assisted Weight Loss System is like a dream come true. With it, many people can lose one to five inches of measured girth while lying on their backs for 30 minutes three times per week for three weeks. That’s with no strict calorie reduction or excessive exercise.

“This dream has become reality in the form of today’s FDA-approved technology called low-level laser lipo machines, also known as red light lasers,” Dr. Tred notes. “There’s no longer a need for people to subject themselves to the risks associated with surgical interventions such as liposuction and tummy tucks, or the use of thermal energy such as fat freezing and hot lasers.

“When applied to the fat layer underneath the skin, low-level laser therapy will produce predictable, consistent, sustainable inch reduction without pain, downtime, rigid food discipline or strenuous exercise. Areas such as the belly, chest, back, thighs, arms and chin can all be safely improved using laser lipo.”

When compared to classic weight loss, the difference is the laser, which works directly on the problem fat cells, causing them to release their contents and shrink. Each 30-minute laser session releases approximately 40 to 60 grams of free fatty acids, or 400 to 600 calories, into the body’s surrounding tissue.

Dr. Tred explains, “The laser treatments release stored calories from the fatty layer of cells, which the body burns as energy. It’s a slow process for the body to absorb and convert those calories into energy with normal exercise and time. That’s where a process called whole body vibration comes in. Whole body vibration use accelerates this transfer of energy.

“Without whole body vibration, it would take two to three days for the body to burn the released calories. Whole body vibration does it effectively in only ten minutes, so patients get results quicker and lose inches more consistently than they would if they relied on home exercise to burn the calories.”

“The laser sessions were very calming, and there was music playing while I was getting treated,” Gregory describes. “The staff put me at ease and made me feel secure that there’d be no outside interference. I got the laser on two spots, my belly and my chest.

“The treatments were nothing. All I had to do was lie on a table, and the staff placed laser paddles on my problem areas, then they moved the paddles every ten minutes. When I finished with that, I went on a special
shaking machine for twenty minutes, and that was one complete treatment.”

While the program does not require calorie restriction or strenuous activity, Dr. Tred does mention that diet modification and some exercise can help the process be more sustaining.

“Patients do need to eat right and move around in order for the results from the low-level laser treatments to be long-lasting,” he urges. “People will be more than happy with the results they see if they follow the entire plan.”

Southern Comfort

Alabama native Lizette* moved to Florida in 2011 after retiring from 20-plus years in the industrial supply business. She says she wasn’t old enough to retire, but her husband urged her to do it anyway, so she agreed. The downside to not working, however, was that her activity level decreased, which had a negative effect on her body.

“I put on some pounds from not doing anything,” Lizette shares. “I developed a double chin, and my stomach was really sticking out. I’d never been overweight, and I was very uncomfortable.

“My clothes felt uncomfortable on my body. I wouldn’t wear fitted clothes, like fitted shirts or dresses, nothing that actually showed my bulges. I wore more loose-fitting clothes because I felt so fat.”

Lizette learned about Slim Body Laser Spa and Dr. Tred’s Ultimate Laser-Assisted Weight Loss System at a local fundraiser she attended. At the fundraiser, the spa’s staff made a positive first impression on Lizette.

“The people at Slim Body Laser Spa were just so upbeat when I went for my consultation,” Lizette recalls. “I loved Dr. Tred. He was a wonderful person and a class act. I was so impressed that I signed up for the entire three-week, nine-session program.”

Thoughts of weight loss were foremost on Lizette’s mind. She was already exercising regularly by swimming in her pool. She was excited about starting Dr. Tred’s program and seeing what the laser could do for her. Like Gregory, Lizette found the treatments comfortable and calming.

“I was totally surprised by the laser sessions. They were very relaxing,” Lizette confirms. “I just lay there and listened to the music. I took a nap while I was getting the treatments. And after the laser sessions, I went on the whole body vibration machine for ten minutes, which was wonderful. I liked it so much, I bought one for home.”

Strict dieting is not required with Dr. Tred’s program, but staff at Slim Body Laser Spa discuss good nutrition with
program participants. Lizette took advantage of that benefit and made some key changes to her daily eating plan.

“The staff was very encouraging as far as diet, using high-protein drinks and other nutrition suggestions,” she relates. “I got into new eating habits, which was a wonderful experience for me.

“There were two things I pretty much cut out of my diet, sugar and bread. I occasionally have half a sandwich, but it’s very rare for me to go to a restaurant and order a sandwich. My husband is following my exercise and diet plan with me, which makes it easier.”

Gregory was also pleased with the nutrition advice he got from the staff at Slim Body Laser Spa. He liked that they didn’t expect him to follow a complex meal plan, like the one the dietitian created for him, or an extremely low-calorie diet.

“There was no crazy diet,” he assures, “The staff gave me information on certain vegetables and fruits I should eat. The information included the number of calories and amount of sugar they contain compared to what I was eating. They stressed getting enough protein for my body to function during the day.”    

Goal Outcomes Achieved

Dr. Tred’s Ultimate Laser-Assisted Weight Loss System did for Gregory and Lizette what diets and exercise alone had failed to accomplish. And they were amazed by how quickly they saw changes in their bodies after starting the program.

Gregory Gollhofer and Lizette (alias) lost pounds and inches using Dr. Tred’s Ultimate Laser-Assisted Weight Loss System at Slim Body Laser Spa in Stuart.

Gregory used his weight loss at Slim Body Laser Spa
as a springboard for a
healthier lifestyle.

“After three treatments, I could tell a difference in the way my clothes were fitting,” Lizette enthuses. “At the end of my third treatment, they measured me, and I’d already lost several inches. After nine sessions, I lost a total of eleven and a half inches and twelve pounds.

“It was awesome. It was so exciting to see the changes in my body. I had a waistline again. I could wear clothes I wouldn’t wear before, like those fitted shirts and dresses.”

Gregory had a similar experience. He realized a difference in his body even sooner, experiencing results right off the bat.

“The changes started right away after the first session,” he marvels. “I noticed I dropped a pound or so of weight, and the size of my body changed. I could tell by the clothing I was wearing.

“I went for nine sessions in three weeks and lost five and a half inches off my belly and one and three-quarters inches off my chest. I also lost nine pounds during that time. I was ecstatic, so I signed up for additional treatments.”

Like Lizette, Gregory also felt more comfortable in his clothes after his laser treatments. He was so pleased with his results, he used them as a springboard to begin a healthier lifestyle that included a nutritious diet and regular exercise. These changes proved very successful for him.

“Before I went to Slim Body Laser Spa, I was wearing size forty or larger pants and extra-large shirts,” Gregory reports. “Right now, I’m between a thirty-six and thirty-eight waist to even things out, and I went down to large shirts.

“When I’m not at Slim Body Laser Spa, I walk about five miles and do forty-five minutes of aerobic exercise in the pool. And for the past four months, I’ve eaten better and lost about thirty-four pounds total to finish at a lean one hundred ninety-five pounds.”

Both Gregory and Lizette are impressed with Dr. Tred, his staff and especially his laser-assisted weight-loss program. They both experienced dramatic results in only nine sessions in three weeks. Thus, they believe in the science behind the laser treatments and have achieved the results to prove it. They’re happy to share what they’ve learned.

“I would suggest Dr. Tred’s program at Slim Body Laser Spa to anyone because it was a totally exciting experience for me,” Lizette says. “Anyone can walk in there and lose three and a half or four inches in three weeks. That’s quite a bit, and it’s pretty impressive.”

“I totally recommend Dr. Tred’s program to my friends,” Gregory agrees. “It’s an excellent option for losing weight. With it, there are no side effects, no pain, no surgery and no dangerous injections. Dr. Tred’s program helped me reduce my size, gain energy and confidence, and achieve a good weight for better health.”

*Patient’s name withheld at her request.

Damaged Disc Recovery

Nonsurgical vacuum therapy ends back and neck pain.

Linda West was born and raised in Downers Grove, Illinois, outside of Chicago, but she spent most of her professional life working in customer service for United Airlines in Denver, Colorado. After an accident as a teen, Linda also spent a good part of her adult life battling severe lower back pain.Dr. Craig S. Aderholdt of Back Pain Institute of West Florida in Bradenton and Sarasota treated Linda West and Marie Lagassey for low back and neck pain with VAX-D® Therapy.

“I always liked trampolines, and after I graduated from high school in 1960, I went to a trampoline park, jumped up and down on one and fell on my back,” Linda remembers. “That was the beginning. I suffered with the resulting back pain for years after that, but the pain really took hold about two years ago.

“It was a very sharp pain right in the middle of my lower back. I was in horrific pain all through the summer of 2017. The pain was so bad, I could hardly walk. I couldn’t even walk to the mailbox to get my mail. I couldn’t bend over. It was very painful. I had to get down on my knees just to make my bed.

“The pain was a ten-plus on a scale of one to ten. When I went to my doctor, he suggested pain management.”

An MRI on Linda’s back revealed she had arthritis, scoliosis and stenosis in her spine. In addition, the vertebrae at the tail of her spine were misaligned. These conditions caused the excruciating pain that Linda was experiencing. Her pain management treatment, which she began that October, included physical therapy, pain medications and spinal injections.

“The doctor gave me pain pills, but they didn’t help that much,” Linda reports. “The shots worked for a little while, and then stopped. They said I could go back every three months, but I couldn’t help thinking the shots were just poison in my system.

“So then the doctor said, Maybe you’ll qualify for radiofrequency ablation, which kills the nerves causing the pain. But I flunked the test for it. After that, I went to physical therapy, but that was a wash. This was in May 2018, and I finally said, That’s enough. This just isn’t working.”

Linda was beginning to think nothing could help her, but while waiting for an appointment at her doctor’s office one day, she picked up a newspaper there and discovered a treatment that promised results.

“I picked up a copy of Florida Health Care News and read an article about Dr. Aderholdt’s treatment at Back Pain Institute of West Florida,” Linda confirms. “I needed some kind of relief, and I didn’t want to continue taking pills. I didn’t want to become a druggie, and they didn’t work that well anyway.

“I was really desperate, so I decided to drive by and see where the institute was located. It wasn’t even a mile from my house. I thought, I’m in so much pain. I’ve got absolutely nothing to lose.”

Back Pain Institute of West Florida is where Dr. Craig S. Aderholdt provides the most advanced treatments for patients in severe pain. Among them is a unique, nonsurgical treatment called VAX-D® Therapy, which is a patented, FDA-approved medical decompression technique for alleviating pressure on the discs of the spine.

“Linda had a very painful lower back condition, and for her, as with many patients with similar painful conditions, I recommended VAX-D Therapy,” says Dr. Aderholdt, who is one of the few doctors in the country who offers this unique treatment.

“I told Dr. Aderholdt he was my last resort,” Linda recalls. “I’d been to a surgeon, who wouldn’t even touch my back because he said there was nothing he could do for it. In Dr. Aderholdt’s office, I couldn’t sit very long in the chair. I had to get up and walk around.

“Dr. Aderholdt explained everything about VAX-D Therapy. He told me about how many treatments I would need to start with, and it came out to twenty-eight sessions. I proceeded with the treatment and went every day for almost three weeks.”

Powerful, Proven Tool

VAX-D Therapy is a medical decompression technique, but Dr. Aderholdt stresses that it is not a traction device. It works differently and achieves significantly better results, the doctor assures.

Dr. Craig S. Aderholdt of Back Pain Institute of West Florida in Bradenton and Sarasota treated Linda West and Marie Lagassey for low back and neck pain with VAX-D® Therapy.

VAX-D Therapy has alleviated Linda’s low back pain

“For many patients, chiropractic adjustments alone can actually relieve the pain,” he observes. “However, for select people with sciatica or herniated, bulging or degenerated discs, VAX-D Therapy has proven extremely effective.

“Many back and neck pain sufferers are good candidates for VAX-D because the treatment can alleviate neck pain, low back pain, numbness and tingling, and pain radiating down the arms and legs.”

During VAX-D Therapy, the patient relaxes on a comfortable, computer-controlled table, secured with a pelvic belt or patented cervical collar, depending on the area to be treated. Carefully specified tension and pressure changes guide the use of VAX-D, allowing the therapist to focus decompression at the exact level of
spinal dysfunction.

Because the VAX-D system is computerized, it enables the table to make subtle but targeted movements, which create a powerful vacuum within the disc space. This vacuum gently draws the disc back to its proper orientation, which pulls nutrient-rich spinal fluid into the disc and stimulates repair cells that effectively mend the disc.

“Nothing else can create such a powerful vacuum,” Dr. Aderholdt asserts. “That is what makes VAX-D such a valuable tool for pain relief. There are imitators, but the vacuum effect is the most powerful one known.

“It doesn’t allow the muscles to contract like other machines might. In fact, VAX-D is the only nonsurgical treatment that has been clinically proven to reduce disc pressure to negative levels.”

VAX-D Therapy has a long track record of leaving customers satisfied, Dr. Aderholdt states. Long-term studies show that VAX-D is effective in more than 88 percent of patients who go through the treatment.

“I consider VAX-D one of the most effective nonsurgical medical treatments for low back pain, neck pain and sciatica today,” Dr Aderholdt says. “This revolutionary technology is one more tool I can offer my patients as we work toward relieving pain and maintaining the health of the lumbar and cervical spine.”

Dr. Aderholdt says many patients report a significant reduction in back pain within only a few treatments, although the total healing process takes longer. The reason it takes a longer period of time, Dr. Aderholdt points out, is that bulging or herniated discs require a series of VAX-D sessions to fully reposition themselves.

“Some patients think that they will get relief after a handful of sessions and they can just quit, but that’s not the case,” he says. “You must follow through with all of the required treatments to get the full benefit.”

Surgical Alternative

Marie Lagassey was a US customs agent for nearly 30 years, dealing with hundreds of international air travelers every day at the Phoenix international airport. It was a rewarding career, but Marie suspects the repetition of stamping passports all day may have started her constant neck pain.

“Stamping passports and using a computer – my head was always kind of a little bit forward, so I think that’s what caused my neck to start hurting all the time,” shares Marie, who moved to Florida following retirement. “The pain became really quite bad. It went down my neck and into my right shoulder. Sometimes, I would wake up at night and both my arms would be asleep and tingling.”

Dr. Craig S. Aderholdt of Back Pain Institute of West Florida in Bradenton and Sarasota treated Linda West and Marie Lagassey for low back and neck pain with VAX-D® Therapy.

VAX-D Therapy allowed Marie to avoid neck surgery

After her retirement, the pain in Marie’s neck didn’t go away. During yoga classes, she says, “I couldn’t even put my arm to the back of my head when stretching because it was too painful.”

While still living in Phoenix, Marie sought chiropractic care, but it didn’t help. She was considering the unappealing possibility she might need surgery, which she thought of as a last resort. Then she read about Dr. Aderholdt and the VAX-D Therapy he offers to select patients.

“I said to myself, Well, let me try this,” she states. “And I’m glad I did because I really did not want to have surgery.”

After a thorough examination and x-rays, Dr. Aderholdt determined Marie was a good candidate for VAX-D.

“Marie was definitely a severe case,” Dr. Aderholdt notes. She had quite a few misalignments in her neck, and degenerative cervical discs. Slippages of vertebrae and degenerated discs were causing narrowing of the spinal cord, which could explain the tingling sensations in her arms, says the doctor.

“And she wanted to avoid surgery. That is something that VAX-D allows for and that is important because whenever an invasive procedure can be avoided and noninvasive measures used instead, the risk of complications is
significantly reduced.”

The VAX-D Therapy treatments, which last for about half an hour per session, turned out to be extremely effective for Marie. She reports that she started to feel substantial relief about two weeks after she began the treatment and is happy to have finally found something that worked for her.

“Since I’ve had the VAX-D Therapy, I can raise my arm and extend it behind my head to stretch. I couldn’t do that before,” says Marie, who is planning to take some golf lessons, a pastime that requires a lot of arm movement.

“On a scale of one to ten, the pain level was an eight when I first started with the treatments,” she describes. “Now, I’m pretty much down to a one. Occasionally, I might feel something, but really there’s no pain now.”

Surgery Averted

The VAX-D Therapy has had the same effect on Linda. She took a trip to visit some friends recently, flying first to Illinois and then on to northern Wisconsin. She was concerned that all the time sitting on an airplane would cause her back to ache terribly, but the pain never materialized.

Dr. Craig S. Aderholdt of Back Pain Institute of West Florida in Bradenton and Sarasota treated Linda West and Marie Lagassey for low back and neck pain with VAX-D® Therapy.

Marie Lagassey

“I was not in pain at all,” Linda marvels. “Then, one day before Christmas, I was at the mall picking up some things, and I walked around for about forty-five minutes. I also parked a ways from the door to the mall. When I got back to my car, I noticed I didn’t have to sit down. I actually walked without pain.

“That was really my first wake-up call that my condition was a lot better. And it’s gotten even better still. I recently took down all of my outside Christmas decorations, and I kind of overdid it. I just went inside and sat in a chair for about twenty minutes, and I was fine. I’ve learned that’s what I’m going to have to do.

“I’m satisfied with the outcome of my treatment. I know my back will never be healed. But my pain level is nothing like it was. It used to be a ten or more. Now, when I’m asked to rate my pain, I say it’s about a one. I can live with that. I haven’t taken a pain pill in five months.”

Marie is not only satisfied but extremely appreciative of the caring atmosphere she experienced whenever she visited Dr. Aderholdt’s office.

“Dr. Aderholdt is very professional, and he’s a very nice person. He explains everything really well,” she describes. “His staff is excellent. I’m really glad that this option came along and I didn’t need surgery.”

For Linda, surgery wasn’t even a consideration. Her condition was beyond that, and pain management failed to help her. She put all of her hope in Dr. Aderholdt’s VAX-D Therapy at Back Pain Institute of West Florida.

“I was at the end of the line, and VAX-D Therapy was the last possible treatment,” Linda shares. “It took a while, but I was patient and it worked out really well. When they first did the x-rays on me, they saw that the twelfth vertebra of my spine stuck out. After VAX-D Therapy,
it went in considerably.

“I recommend the VAX-D Therapy to anybody. What Dr. Aderholdt did for my back pain is just amazing! I’m very happy with how it turned out.”

Treatment Trilogy

Three avenues for treatment of varicose and spider veins.

A Fort Myers native, 38-year-old Natalie* has a full-time job as an administrator of a health care company. She’s also the mother of four children. Between the stress of her job and four pregnancies, it wasn’t a complete surprise when Natalie developed issues with pain in her legs.In both cases, patients wear compression stockings and are encouraged to walk. This protocol enables the fluid from the injections to adhere to the vein walls and extend farther into the entire vein area, helping to painlessly close the leaking veins. “The main difference is that traditional sclerotherapy usually takes two, and sometimes three or four, treatments to be completely effective,” Nestor cautions. “The number of treatments depends on the amount and severity of spider veins patients have throughout their lower extremities.” Ten Out of Ten While Natalie’s treatments at Premier Vein and Vascular are not completed, she has already begun to realize beneficial effects from them. She’s thrilled with the positive results she’s achieved thus far. “The treatments themselves are easy,” Natalie relates. “The procedures I had done were relatively painless, and Nestor and the technicians who help him relieved any anxiety I might have felt. They made me feel very comfortable. That really helped. “And so did the treatments. The pain in my legs is gone. My nighttime leg cramps are gone as well. I’m still being treated, so my legs are a work in progress. But there’s a plan for my legs, and they look much better already.” Not only is Natalie happy with the treatment plan Nestor created for her, she’s also pleased with the nurse practitioner himself, as well as his team at Premier Vein and Vascular. They make her treatments easy to tolerate and her visits to the practice pleasant events. “Nestor is great,” Natalie says. “He’s very knowledgeable and very competent. He’s been doing these treatments for a very long time. He makes me feel calm and eases my fears about the treatment process. “And the staff is very courteous. They get me in and out quickly, and they treat me like family. I definitely recommend Premier Vein and Vascular to friends and family. In fact, I already have. My family actually gets treated there. “My experience with Premier Vein and Vascular has been great,” she adds. “The staff was awesome, and scheduling was easy. They were able to get me in at convenient times, they accepted my insurance, and my appointments went smoothly. “On a scale of one to ten, I rate them a ten!” FHCN staff article. Before and after images courtesy of Premier Vein and Vascular. mkb *Patient’s name changed at her request.

“The problems with my legs had been going on for about fifteen years,” Natalie reports. “I had the pain in my legs, as well as some burning and numbness. I didn’t have any swelling or discoloration, but the pain started getting worse after work when I’d lie down. I knew it wasn’t normal.

“I work out a lot, so I thought at first my pain was related to that. After a while, I realized it wasn’t. It was actually related to my leg veins. I had visible varicose and spider veins.”

Through her work in the health care field, Natalie has become familiar with all of the local vein treatment centers. One center stood out to her as being superior to the rest. That center was Premier Vein and Vascular, which has facilities in Tampa and Largo.

“I was impressed by Premier Vein and Vascular because they’re a full-service vascular practice and not a fly-by-night vein center,” Natalie states. “They treat all portions of the vascular system, so they’re a good place to go if you need to have any type of vein work done. I trusted them.”

At Premier Vein and Vascular, Natalie met with certified nurse practitioner Nestor Guerrero, ARNP. A registered vascular ultrasound technician performed a diagnostic ultrasound to investigate Natalie’s superficial venous system, or the veins closest to the skin.

The exam included a thorough look at the greater saphenous veins and their branches and revealed that Natalie was suffering from a condition called chronic venous insufficiency, or CVI, in both legs.

In both cases, patients wear compression stockings and are encouraged to walk. This protocol enables the fluid from the injections to adhere to the vein walls and extend farther into the entire vein area, helping to painlessly close the leaking veins. “The main difference is that traditional sclerotherapy usually takes two, and sometimes three or four, treatments to be completely effective,” Nestor cautions. “The number of treatments depends on the amount and severity of spider veins patients have throughout their lower extremities.” Ten Out of Ten While Natalie’s treatments at Premier Vein and Vascular are not completed, she has already begun to realize beneficial effects from them. She’s thrilled with the positive results she’s achieved thus far. “The treatments themselves are easy,” Natalie relates. “The procedures I had done were relatively painless, and Nestor and the technicians who help him relieved any anxiety I might have felt. They made me feel very comfortable. That really helped. “And so did the treatments. The pain in my legs is gone. My nighttime leg cramps are gone as well. I’m still being treated, so my legs are a work in progress. But there’s a plan for my legs, and they look much better already.” Not only is Natalie happy with the treatment plan Nestor created for her, she’s also pleased with the nurse practitioner himself, as well as his team at Premier Vein and Vascular. They make her treatments easy to tolerate and her visits to the practice pleasant events. “Nestor is great,” Natalie says. “He’s very knowledgeable and very competent. He’s been doing these treatments for a very long time. He makes me feel calm and eases my fears about the treatment process. “And the staff is very courteous. They get me in and out quickly, and they treat me like family. I definitely recommend Premier Vein and Vascular to friends and family. In fact, I already have. My family actually gets treated there. “My experience with Premier Vein and Vascular has been great,” she adds. “The staff was awesome, and scheduling was easy. They were able to get me in at convenient times, they accepted my insurance, and my appointments went smoothly. “On a scale of one to ten, I rate them a ten!” FHCN staff article. Before and after images courtesy of Premier Vein and Vascular. mkb *Patient’s name changed at her request.

Before & After Vein Treatment

“Blood in leg veins flows upward against gravity, so they contain valves to keep the blood from flowing backward,” Nestor explains. “Occasionally, due to genetics, age, profession, trauma, surgery or life in general, those valves start malfunctioning.

“In Natalie’s case, blood was not flowing in the proper direction in her veins, which allowed blood to pool in her lower extremities. Symptoms developed from the increased venous pressure, which caused the blood to seep outside of the veins, irritating the surrounding tissues.”

Patients such as Natalie who seek leg vein treatment from Premier Vein and Vascular generally have symptoms ranging from simple tiredness, swelling or heaviness in their legs to numbness, tingling, cramping and pain.

Without treatment, more severe CVI can develop, which can cause more serious symptoms such as discoloration, breakdown of the skin and ulceration. With potentially dangerous consequences, CVI is much more than a cosmetic concern.

After Natalie’s ultrasound evaluation confirmed CVI, Nestor recommended a trio of procedures to treat her chronic venous insufficiency. They were endovenous laser ablation, sclerotherapy and ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy.

CVI Solutions

The first procedure was endovenous laser ablation, which is performed using ultrasound to accurately locate the vein to be treated. Before the procedure begins, Nestor places an anesthetic on the skin and around the vein to numb it.

“While looking at a screen, we access the vein, place the laser catheter inside and set it,” Nestor educates. “If the vein is at thigh level, as in Natalie’s case, we set the catheter at two and a half to three centimeters from the deep vein system, which lies in the leg muscles.In both cases, patients wear compression stockings and are encouraged to walk. This protocol enables the fluid from the injections to adhere to the vein walls and extend farther into the entire vein area, helping to painlessly close the leaking veins. “The main difference is that traditional sclerotherapy usually takes two, and sometimes three or four, treatments to be completely effective,” Nestor cautions. “The number of treatments depends on the amount and severity of spider veins patients have throughout their lower extremities.” Ten Out of Ten While Natalie’s treatments at Premier Vein and Vascular are not completed, she has already begun to realize beneficial effects from them. She’s thrilled with the positive results she’s achieved thus far. “The treatments themselves are easy,” Natalie relates. “The procedures I had done were relatively painless, and Nestor and the technicians who help him relieved any anxiety I might have felt. They made me feel very comfortable. That really helped. “And so did the treatments. The pain in my legs is gone. My nighttime leg cramps are gone as well. I’m still being treated, so my legs are a work in progress. But there’s a plan for my legs, and they look much better already.” Not only is Natalie happy with the treatment plan Nestor created for her, she’s also pleased with the nurse practitioner himself, as well as his team at Premier Vein and Vascular. They make her treatments easy to tolerate and her visits to the practice pleasant events. “Nestor is great,” Natalie says. “He’s very knowledgeable and very competent. He’s been doing these treatments for a very long time. He makes me feel calm and eases my fears about the treatment process. “And the staff is very courteous. They get me in and out quickly, and they treat me like family. I definitely recommend Premier Vein and Vascular to friends and family. In fact, I already have. My family actually gets treated there. “My experience with Premier Vein and Vascular has been great,” she adds. “The staff was awesome, and scheduling was easy. They were able to get me in at convenient times, they accepted my insurance, and my appointments went smoothly. “On a scale of one to ten, I rate them a ten!” FHCN staff article. Before and after images courtesy of Premier Vein and Vascular. mkb *Patient’s name changed at her request.

“Once the entire area is numb, we can safely turn on the laser machine, and over a few minutes’ time, we carefully pull back the laser catheter while sealing the vein with laser energy. We continue to do that until the laser is completely removed from the leg.”

The other two procedures Nestor chose to treat Natalie’s CVI were sclerotherapy and ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy. While both procedures use chemicals to seal incompetent veins, the two techniques have different uses.

“Both sclerotherapy and ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy use sclerosing agents to seal leaking veins, but they are separate treatments,” Nestor confirms. “In both cases, we use a mixture of air and fluid in specified ratios that are injected directly into the veins.

“With ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy, we use ultrasound to visualize the incompetent branches under the skin that we are injecting. With traditional sclerotherapy, we directly inject the spider veins on the surface of the skin that are visible to the naked eye.”

In both cases, patients wear compression stockings and are encouraged to walk. This protocol enables the fluid from the injections to adhere to the vein walls and extend farther into the entire vein area, helping to painlessly close the leaking veins.

“The main difference is that traditional sclerotherapy usually takes two, and sometimes three or four, treatments to be completely effective,” Nestor cautions. “The number of treatments depends on the amount and severity of spider veins patients have throughout their lower extremities.”

Ten Out of Ten

While Natalie’s treatments at Premier Vein and Vascular are not completed, she has already begun to realize beneficial effects from them. She’s thrilled with the positive results she’s achieved thus far.In both cases, patients wear compression stockings and are encouraged to walk. This protocol enables the fluid from the injections to adhere to the vein walls and extend farther into the entire vein area, helping to painlessly close the leaking veins. “The main difference is that traditional sclerotherapy usually takes two, and sometimes three or four, treatments to be completely effective,” Nestor cautions. “The number of treatments depends on the amount and severity of spider veins patients have throughout their lower extremities.” Ten Out of Ten While Natalie’s treatments at Premier Vein and Vascular are not completed, she has already begun to realize beneficial effects from them. She’s thrilled with the positive results she’s achieved thus far. “The treatments themselves are easy,” Natalie relates. “The procedures I had done were relatively painless, and Nestor and the technicians who help him relieved any anxiety I might have felt. They made me feel very comfortable. That really helped. “And so did the treatments. The pain in my legs is gone. My nighttime leg cramps are gone as well. I’m still being treated, so my legs are a work in progress. But there’s a plan for my legs, and they look much better already.” Not only is Natalie happy with the treatment plan Nestor created for her, she’s also pleased with the nurse practitioner himself, as well as his team at Premier Vein and Vascular. They make her treatments easy to tolerate and her visits to the practice pleasant events. “Nestor is great,” Natalie says. “He’s very knowledgeable and very competent. He’s been doing these treatments for a very long time. He makes me feel calm and eases my fears about the treatment process. “And the staff is very courteous. They get me in and out quickly, and they treat me like family. I definitely recommend Premier Vein and Vascular to friends and family. In fact, I already have. My family actually gets treated there. “My experience with Premier Vein and Vascular has been great,” she adds. “The staff was awesome, and scheduling was easy. They were able to get me in at convenient times, they accepted my insurance, and my appointments went smoothly. “On a scale of one to ten, I rate them a ten!” FHCN staff article. Before and after images courtesy of Premier Vein and Vascular. mkb *Patient’s name changed at her request.

“The treatments themselves are easy,” Natalie relates. “The procedures I had done were relatively painless, and Nestor and the technicians who help him relieved any anxiety I might have felt. They made me feel very comfortable. That really helped.

“And so did the treatments. The pain in my legs is gone. My nighttime leg cramps are gone as well. I’m still being treated, so my legs are a work in progress. But there’s a plan for my legs, and they look much better already.”

Not only is Natalie happy with the treatment plan Nestor created for her, she’s also pleased with the nurse practitioner himself, as well as his team at Premier Vein and Vascular. They make her treatments easy to tolerate and her visits to the practice pleasant events.

“Nestor is great,” Natalie says. “He’s very knowledgeable and very competent. He’s been doing these treatments for a very long time. He makes me feel calm and eases my fears about the treatment process.

“And the staff is very courteous. They get me in and out quickly, and they treat me like family. I definitely recommend Premier Vein and Vascular to friends and family. In fact, I already have. My family actually gets treated there.

“My experience with Premier Vein and Vascular has been great,” she adds. “The staff was awesome, and scheduling was easy. They were able to get me in at convenient times, they accepted my insurance, and my appointments went smoothly.

“On a scale of one to ten, I rate them a ten!”

*Patient’s name changed at her request.
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