2017-18 Sentara Orthopedics Annual Report

Select Page

Sentara Back & Neck Center

The Sentara Back & Neck Center provides seamless, coordinated back and neck care. This care is now available at seven Sentara hospitals. This specialized center brings together an experienced team of expert orthopedic spine surgeons and neurosurgeons, as well as nurses and therapists with special training in orthopedics and spine care.

click map to enlarge

This approach results in better communication and improved patient care. The Sentara Back & Neck Center continues to distinguish itself by providing exceptional care:

  • Dedicated Spine Patient Navigators provide seamless, personalized care and education before and after surgery.
  • Staff focus and special training: the nursing staff and physical therapists have a unified focus on back and neck care, and many are specially credentialed in orthopedics. This focus and expertise results in higher patient satisfaction with their care and outcomes.
  • Preoperative classes set patient expectations and increase patient ambulation rates (return to walking) after surgery.
  • The translated Spanish version of the Sentara Back & Neck Center Patient Guidebook offers the opportunity for greater understanding of patient education.
  • Patient Commitment. Choosing to have elective back or neck surgery does come with a commitment from the patient and a coach to do their best to learn what they can do to have the very best outcomes. This document bullets out the simple things that can optimize the patient experience and recovery.
  • An online video offers patients and their family members 24/7 availability to see what they can expect during their Sentara Back & Neck Center experience: SentaraBackNeckCenter.com/video.

  • StopLight Discharge Poster. With hospital stays after surgery becoming shorter, when patients are discharged home, they need to know the guidelines for what is normal, what symptoms need to be discussed with a health care provider and what needs immediate attention.


“It all started when I suddenly felt a sharp pain in my back. It traveled down my left leg, making everyday tasks impossible. I couldn’t stand. I couldn’t sit. I had to hold onto the walls and furniture for support. I tried physical therapy and painkillers. Though the painkillers helped some, I knew I couldn’t take them forever. I had an MRI and X-rays, which revealed a cyst on the nerves in my lower back. Later, using X-ray imaging guidance, the doctor performed a 10-minute facet injection procedure to rupture the cyst. I came into the hospital barely able to walk, and when I left, I was walking like nothing had ever happened to me.”