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Failed Back Surgery – FBSS

Dr. Howard Liss treats disorders that cause pain and disability by providing consultative services and soft tissue and joint injections when needed. When medically appropriate, he makes specific referrals for diagnostic testing (lab work, imaging, electrodiagnosis), physical and occupational therapy, interventional procedures (epidurals and facet joint injections), and surgery.

For patients undergoing surgery for persistent back pain, the thought of a failed back surgery is daunting, to say the least. Yet, the reality still stands—while patients may be considered good candidates for surgery and may be under the care of a reputable surgeon, spinal surgery only predicts a 95% rate of success.

Though merely a label used to describe an unsuccessful back surgery, failed back surgery syndrome, or FBSS, occurs when patients continue to experience pain following back surgery. Perhaps the number one reason why back surgeries prove ineffective is that the particular region that became the focus of the operation was not the real source of the patient’s pain.

Back and neck surgeries are often invasive, open procedures where a number of anatomical changes are made. Therefore, it is difficult to treat FBSS. Yet, a physiatrist is well positioned to offer multiple non-invasive modalities to manage back and neck pain, improve movement and help overall functioning.

Non-Invasive Solutions For FBSS

When patients seek relief from back pain experienced as a result of a failed back surgery, physiatrists become their greatest ally. They steer the ship towards effective non-invasive solutions to reduce pain, strengthen the muscles needed to support the spine and restore flexibility.

Whether care is inpatient or outpatient, physiatrists often consult with a team of clinicians and interventionists that are committed to educating and empowering patients in their recovery. Pain management may include teaching exercises and relaxation techniques, using heat and ice to reduce inflammation and discomfort or adjusting posture to relieve pressure on the spine. These solutions are often used in conjunction with medication and spinal injections, under the direction of the physiatrist. In turn, an emphasis is placed on the mind-body connection, with opportunities to engage in counseling to manage the psychological effects of a failed back surgery.

At the Howard Liss, M.D. Rehabilitation Institute, patients can rely on Dr. Liss to put together the right treatment, therapy and rehabilitation plan to ensure the most optimal outcome. Dr. Liss works closely with other specialists required to rehabilitate patients suffering from chronic pain or serious injuries, and Dr. Liss will refer patients as needed to ensure appropriate treatment. With extensive education and exposure to a variety of conditions that affect the cervical and lumbar spine, bones, nerves, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles, brain, and spinal cord, Dr. Liss is uniquely positioned to help patients manage their pain and maximize their functioning.

If you are suffering from FBSS, contact the Howard Liss, M.D. Rehabilitation Institute today.


Rehabilitation Institute

111 Dean Drive Suite 1
Tenafly, NJ, 07670
Fax: (201) 871-2214

Call Us: (201) 390-9200