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John's Story

We got him back to his family, and the golf course

John had ongoing lower back pain for years. A bad fall initiated an injury and damaged the disk in his lower back. Not long after having spine fusion surgery, John reconnected with his former student Rajiv Desai, MD at an alumni event.

When he was again at a point where he needed to undergo surgery for spine misalignment, John reached out to Dr. Desai directly. John was in tremendous pain, and had weakness in his spine. It severely limited his mobility and activity level. He was unable to work out, exercise, walk for very long, play tennis or golf, which were some of his favorite activities. He could not even travel long enough to spend time with his kids and grandchild. This had a huge impact on him, as he is very close to his family.

John’s experience from the beginning—in scheduling his pre-operation appointment and surgery, to the friendly and attentive nurses, to the woman from admitting who brought him to the elevator to the waiting room–gave him the confidence and security that he needed to feel comfortable with his spine surgery. He felt that he received comprehensive care from experienced staff who specialized in spine surgery and designed a treatment plan for quick recovery – for the long-term. He has since fully recovered and is now able to spend quality time with his wife, kids and grandchild. And he’s finally back to one of his favorite sports – golf!

Spine patient John Ernst swings his golf club

Spine Care Services

If back or neck pain is interfering with your ability to enjoy life, it may be time to visit Maine Medical Partners - Neurosurgery & Spine.

Neuroscience at Maine Medical Center

Our spine care services are part of Maine Medical Center's comprehensive neuroscience program.