Maxine Lowrie's Story


I have always had issues with my back for 20 years. Mainly a "stability" problem with my lower back. I always just accepted the fact and used exercise to keep the status quo. I had cortisone injections into my lower back in 2007 which did little good.  Everything changed in October 2009. After two incidents with my young Horse I found myself in considerable pain. So much so that I was sent for X-ray of my thoracic spine as it was feared I had a compressed fracture, luckily this was not the case. Over the following year I had to give up my horses and was only able to leave the house and be on my feet for half a day. These excursions would result in 36 hours of pain that would make me feel sick. I spent my days on the sofa and trying gentle exercises (which did not help). Over this period I went to chiropractor, osteopath, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy and denervation of the facet joints from S1 to L2. Still I was in significant pain.

To be honest I had come to the end of my tether. I was stuffing dihydracodein, paracetamol and ibuprofen into my system just to try to get some relief. Sleeping was very sporadic.  It was at this time I found The Spinal Foundation on the web. It looked interesting but I felt I needed to do more research. Over the next month I scoured the net for information on Mr Knight and the procedure he performed. After extensive research I decided along with my husband the we should go for an appointment.  It was like a breath of fresh air. I had seen a number of consultants regarding my back issues and had found them to be cold and to be honest rather arrogant. Mr Knight was methodical in his approach and very pleasant (even cracking the odd joke). He explained my MRI and the X-rays I had had that day (X-rays were taken weight bearing......what a brilliant idea!).

Mr Knight made no sweeping promises and explained in detail the options that were open to me. I was with him for over an hour, with previous consultants I would be lucky to get 20 minutes. In addition there was no hint of the aloof and arrogant attitude I had experienced in the past. We went away feeling fully equipped to make a decision. I took another week to do additional research to ensure I was fully informed. I then made the appointment for my operation; 30th November 2010.
I arrived at the hospital on the 30th November 2010, in about a foot of snow early in the morning. Mr Knight came to see me and talked through the procedure with me. The procedure went well and I was in theatre for three and a half hours. I had a piece of bone removed at L1, an osteophyte that was digging into my nerve. In addition to further work at L5/S1 and L1/L2. I was aware throughout but I have to say it was fine, far less painful than the denervation I had!! Immediately afterward I noticed the pain down my left leg had gone but I did feel sore in my back. Later that day I took a short walk in the hospital. The next morning my husband and I made our way down South.

I had read testimonials on The Spinal Foundation's website and other US websites of patients feeling so good immediately after surgery that they did themselves harm. I have to say my experience was very different. I was in quite a bit of pain afterward and I also suffered a late and very uncomfortable "flare" about 5 weeks after surgery. This made me anxious, but I contacted The Spinal Foundation each time and Jenny Jago was very helpful plus Mr Knight was on-hand at the end of the line to offer advice. It was a hard time and I have to say I wondered if I would ever feel any better.   After 8 weeks or so Mr Knight felt I was ready for physio and  recommended a physiotherapist in my area. I have to say I was a little apprehensive, but how wrong could I be!  Mr Knight's recommendation was bang on! Petra is fantastic and working with Mr Knight they have worked miracles. Before my surgery I was in significant pain. I could not sit for more than about 20 minutes and if I went out for half a day I would be crippled for the next 36 hours, stuck on the sofa.

Now I have a full life. I have joined a gym, I go to a Zumba class once a week, I can walk for miles and I have started riding again!!!! Who would have thought! I'm not completely pain free, but I never expected that, but I am in a much better place than I was 12 months ago.

I would recommend Mr Knight and his team without reservation. I feel that they really care about what they are doing. That fact and the obvious level of knowledge and skill displayed by the Surgical team has been second-to-none.
Would I do it again? In a heart beat.