Pune, 16th October 2023: Every 16 October is celebrated as World Spine day to raise awareness about spine problems & the theme is Move your Spine , said Dr Shailesh Hadgaonkar Chief Spine Surgeon & Head Neuroscience Unit at Sancheti Hospital Pune.
The day highlights the burden of spinal pain and disability caused because of that around the world. The day is celebrated to create awareness of the importance of spinal health.
When the overall incidence of cancer is increasing in the world, experts highlight the increased burden of a spinal tumor. As the symptoms of a spinal tumor resemble those of more common conditions, a spinal tumor is overlooked many-a-times by patients. On the occasion of World Spin Day, in a bid to create awareness on a spinal tumor, doctors highlight some of the important factors about it.
A patient with back pain generally visits a physician / doctor thinking that it must be some orthopedic issue. Experts mention that it is therefore important to know the symptoms of a spinal tumor. Dr. Shailesh Hadgaonkar, a consultant spine surgeon from Sancheti Institute of orthopedics and Rehabilitation, Pune, said, “Patients with spinal tumor display some peculiar symptoms. There is severe back pain and weight loss in spinal tumor patients. They feel weak and there is a loss of appetite sometimes. In some rare cases, end-stage patients also witness paralysis. If you see any of these conditions, patients should visit the doctor.”
The spinal tumor is an abnormal mass of tissue within or surrounding the spinal cord. Spinal tumors are not very common. There are different types of tumors. A benign spinal tumor is non-cancerous while the malignant spinal tumor is cancerous.
Experts mentioned that the incidence of spinal tumors is increasing in India. While explaining this, Dr. Hadgaonkar, added, “Overall incidence of cancer in India is increasing. Along with that, the incidence of spinal tumors is also increasing. The spine is one of the largest organs in the body. It is connected from the neck to the lower limb. Also, with advanced technology diagnosis has increased, leading to increased cases.”
When asked about advanced technology which is helping patients’ diagnosis and recovery, Dr. Hadgaonkar, said, “With diagnostic facilities like pet scan, genetic testing of the tumor, advanced biopsy, advanced chemotherapy, and advanced surgical technique; patients with the spinal tumor can live a quality life. We have cases where with surgical interventions even patients with advanced tumors can carry out their daily routine. Spine surgery has become very safe nowadays.”
Managing a spinal tumor is teamwork. Oncologists, spine specialists, physiotherapists, and radiologists; with their teamwork help spine patients. Experts mention that patients should not delay for long till they worsen.