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Brenda Tweedy

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BRENDA TWEEDY– DISCECTOMY BY DR. MALIK

Degenerative Disc Disease made my life miserable for over 10 years. I suffered severe pain throughout the day. Unable to sew, tend my garden, or even work, I spent my time idling around the house struggling to do even simple chores. I couldn’t even enjoy visits with my grand children, like I so desperately wanted.

In addition to my neck and back pain, crippling migraine headaches completely eliminated any joy from my life. They were incredibly painful and they were constant. I would close the doors and shut the drapes when I got a migraine in an attempt to eliminate all light and noise. It didn’t help. I thought about suicide more than once, because if this was living I wasn’t much interested any longer. It was more like trying to survive.

I was under the care of a pain management doctor during this time. He treated me with medications that had a limited effect. but never offered a real solution for my pain, He kept telling me to put off surgery as long as I possibly could. Thankfully, one of my good friends encouraged me to see Dr. Malik. She told me “he’s very good and I’ve seen him help many patients”.

It was a good thing I saw Dr. Malik when I did. His examination revealed that the bone spurs and bulging disks in my neck had me 1mm away from total paralysis. I needed surgery immediately.

The idea of surgery was very scary for me. I take the blood thinner Coumadin and had nearly died from internal bleeding after a previous unrelated surgery. Dr. Malik assured me that bleeding would not be an issue and even arranged for me to meet with the hematologist who discussed his plan for my surgery in detail. This really helped put me at ease as did Dr. Malik’s confidence. When he looked me in the eye and told me “Brenda, I promise you, you’ll be much better.” I knew that he meant it.

As for the surgery itself, Dr. Malik cautiously performed a Discectomy, removing bone spurs from my spinal cord and placing bone graphs on 3 discs along with titanium plates. I was home in three days.

I’m 5 months removed from surgery and improving each day. My pain may never be completely eliminated, but I’m much more active now and I’m able to enjoy my life again. My migraine headaches have dramatically reduced, and my pain levels are much better when compared to what I felt like prior to surgery. Dr. Malik was true to his word and I couldn’t be more grateful to him. There are a few people in my life who I consider to be heroes. One of them is my son who is a fire fighter and has helped save many lives. Dr. Malik is also a hero to me. In a very real way, he saved my life!

-Brenda Tweedy