Carol's Story-minimally invasive microdiscectomy - Cape Cod Healthcare

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Meet Carol Penfield

Using Minimally Invasive Surgery to Restore a Health Professional’s Health

Carol PenfieldCarol Penfield, NPC was a little surprised when neurosurgeon Achilles Papavasiliou MD informed her that she had a herniated disc in her back that might require surgery.

A life long runner and triathlete, Penfield is in top physical shape. She is a nurse practitioner and personal trainer at the Chatham Health and Swim Club and works with patients in recovery from back surgery. She also provides training to avoid injury in the first place.

“For ten years I have taught back and core exercises. I couldn’t believe I wasn’t immune,” said Penfield.

Achilles Papavasiliou, MD, had referred patients to Penfield for years, so she was well aware of his skill and expertise. “ I felt he understood my lifestyle and how important it was for me to return to a full level of function,” said Penfield. When it was her turn, there was no doubt about where to turn for care.

“Restoring quality of life is an important part of what we do,” said Dr. Papavasiliou. After trying a conservative approach using exercise therapy and injection, they both agreed that undergoing a minimally invasive microdisectomy was the best option.

“This surgery is very common,” said Dr. Papavasiliou. It is done through a tube and uses a microscope to reach the affected disc. It often provides immediate pain relief.

Penfield's recovery was swift. “To be on the other side, to be pain free, is just fantastic!’ she said.

You can continue to learn more about Carol Penfield’s story by watching the following video.

Learn more about Minimally Invasive Microdiscectomy

Learn more about Achilles Papavasiliou, MD, FAANS