Back Pain vs. Mouth Pain

I am a busy spine surgeon, yet I spend most of my time talking my patients out of surgery. When I do recommend surgical treatment, many, if not most, become apprehensive. They have heard that spine surgery never works and will relate stories to me about their friends, family, or … Read More

Compassion and an Italian Dinner

Compassion—First and foremost I am on a much-needed vacation this week in Italy.  From 1980 until 1990, my wife lived in Florence.  We have many friends in Italy we like to visit as much as we can.  It is a unique opportunity for me in that she is fluent in … Read More

How Many More Neck Surgeries?

One patient of mind sought me out from Florida for a second opinion on his neck.  He was about 50 years old and had been disabled since 2001 with chronic pain over most of his body.  He had at least 10 different symptoms of burning, aching, stabbing, and tingling that would … Read More

Enjoy Your Day-Today

“Happy” We all want to become better, happier people, and we work pretty hard at it. The marketing world keeps reminding us that we are not even close to our potential and holds up endless images of perfection that reinforce that idea. The solution advertising offers is a better appearance, … Read More

The First and Last Day of School

“It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old.  They grow old because they stop pursuing dreams.” Gabriel Garcia Marquez “It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old. They stop pursing dreams when they are crushed by relentless anxiety… Gabriel Garcia Marquez … Read More

“I Am Not Angry”

A few years ago, I evaluated a retired businessman for pain down the front of his right leg. It had begun about eight months earlier. The pain was moderate but frustrating. He had not experienced prior back problems and was not used to dealing with pain.  It was unclear what … Read More

Pain = Anger = Abuse

I was raised in a chaotic household. My mother was physically and emotionally abusive. It was confusing for me to feel like I had a mother who would do anything for her family and then, within seconds, watch her unpredictably fly into a rage lasting several days. From a young child’s … Read More

Problems are Opportunities

I was in clinic today and a new patient cancelled.  I had the chance to spend some extra time with Lisa, a patient that I am just beginning to get to know. We had a long discussion about the DOCC Project.  Although she was initially resistant to the DOCC Project, … Read More

A Bunch of Balloons

Much, if not most, of what the DOC project presents about creating a central nervous shift is 180 degrees different than how most of us are taught to deal with our conscious mind. One of the most important paradoxes to understand is that you cannot fix your nervous system because … Read More

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