“It’s not unusual for patients to be nervous about back surgery,” Dr. Eggart says. “For the correct patient and completed properly, however, it can be very beneficial.“
In Behanna’s case, after months of trying more conservative options, surgery was clearly the best approach, he says.
“When patients begin to recover and start reclaiming their activities, we see how life-changing it can be,” he says. “For someone like Ms. Behanna, that means keeping her active and independent, and getting her back to her roses.”
Behanna’s recovery started with intensive inpatient rehabilitation through Tidelands Health Rehabilitation Hospital. The early days were difficult: three-hour sessions every day for seven days.
“It was intense, but they took incredible care of me,” she says. “Occupational rehab taught me to get in and out of the bed and bathe and brush my teeth, basically tricks and instruments to use to help with everyday chores like putting shoes and socks on.”
When she was discharged from the hospital, rehab continued on an outpatient basis. Michelle Sine, a physical therapist for Tidelands Health Rehabilitation Services at Myrtle Beach, saw Behanna twice per week for eight weeks. Together, they worked to strengthen Behanna’s lower body, improve her balance, walking and muscle flexibility.
Physical therapist Michelle Sine
She says Behanna is a success because she’s a highly focused and motivated person, and she has a support system of family and friends.
Behanna says Sine is both tender and tough.
“She holds you to task, and that’s what I knew I needed to get back on my feet,” Behanna says. “I never thought I’d be up and walking so soon. They taught me how to live and take care of my back. They taught me how to vacuum my floor the right way. It’s nice to know that people care that much about you to help you that way.”