Gemma Gets Her Life Back Thanks To Amazing Spinal Surgery

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A patient says she has her life back again after undergoing surgery at Woodthorpe Hospital.

Gemma Lessells has been boosted massively by a lumbar discectomy procedure which was delivered by consultant Mr Vivek Pannikar.

The 34-year-old was in agony with lower back and leg pain which was brought on following a car accident in Scotland. She moved to Gainsborough in Lincolnshire with her family and that’s when the pain worsened and she sought help from her local doctor.

An MRI scan revealed the true extent of the problem and she was referred to see Mr Pannikar at Woodthorpe. The spinal specialist outlined a number of treatment options and Gemma was keen to press ahead with surgery and put an end to the torment she was experiencing on a daily basis.

Patients can either pay privately or use their health insurance to fund spinal surgery at the Nottingham-based private hospital or be referred for treatment through the NHS.

Mother-of-two Gemma said: “I suffered whiplash following a car crash up in Scotland where I used to live. “At first I thought it was the whiplash that was causing the pain but when that wore off I was still having problems and it was extremely uncomfortable. “I was experiencing muscle spasms in my lower back and at the top of my legs and I couldn’t even put my shoes and socks on or get dressed easily. My children had to help me.”

Gemma booked an appointment to see her GP in Gainsborough and she was given some initial pain relief but it made little difference. She met Mr Pannikar for an initial consultation who revealed she would need a lumbar discectomy – a procedure to remove a prolapsed (slipped) portion of the disc away from the spinal nerve.

She said: “Woodthorpe Hospital was put forward to me and even though it’s an hour or so from where I live, I couldn’t stand the pain any longer and I just wanted to get something done about it. “I was very impressed after meeting Mr Pannikar and despite being a bit apprehensive he made me feel at ease and explained everything thoroughly to me.”

Gemma, who is a teacher training postgraduate, says she could feel the difference almost straight away after surgery. Now she can’t wait to get back to doing things she took for granted before her car accident like bike rides with her children.

She said: “I was expecting to feel some pain after the operation which is only natural after major surgery but as far as the pain I had been experiencing goes, I knew something had changed and it felt so much better. I was over the moon.

“I am virtually pain free and I’m back to how I was before the accident. I just feel so relieved and can get back to the things I love doing with freedom of movement again.”

Gemma says she would have no hesitation in choosing Woodthorpe Hospital if she ever needs surgery again.

Gemma said: “I had never been to or heard of Woodthorpe Hospital before but the whole experience was first class and has been life-changing for me.

“Every member of staff I met, from the receptionist at my initial consultation until my discharge the day following surgery, could not have been more professional or helpful. “I felt like my concerns and opinions regarding various treatment options were listened to and respected. “The aftercare I received during my stay was tremendous and nothing was too much trouble and I can honestly say that this was the best hospital stay and level of service that I could have possibly received.”


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