Adam P. Smith, MD, FAANS is a board certified neurosurgeon and Rocky Mountain Brain & Spine Institute is his business providing neurosurgical information to the community. He is committed to the wellness of the patients he treats. Dr. Smith uses minimally invasive surgical approaches for the brain and spine, and uses the most up-to-date neuroimaging, surgical navigation, robotic and artificial intelligence modalities.

When Does Conservative Back Pain Treatment Turn Into Swiss Cheese Making?

Conservative treatment is often tried before considering low back surgery.  Time, anti-inflammatory medication, physical therapy, yoga, and injections are reasonable modalities.  Even after surgery, adjuvant options may be considered. Often when patients present in a neurosurgery clinic, they have already tried injections and ponder if they have pursued enough to consider surgery.  It’s not uncommon…

The 1980 Backbone of Soviet Union Hockey Wasn’t a Mere 33 Segmented Column of Osteocytes

As a spine surgeon, I have been rhetorically asked by patients with chronic spine pain, “Can you just remove my spine?”  Of course, the answer is “no”, we don’t do “spine-ectomies”. Even though 90% of animals don’t have one, the backbone is one of the most important evolutionary innovations in the history of life.  Vertebrates…

Etymology of a “Shrink”

As a neurosurgeon, my patients occasionally refer to me by numerous friendly slang terms, including “doc”, “sawbones”, “spine guy”, “pop the topper”… I’m most commonly mistakenly called a neurologist, which is a similar specialty, but a non-surgical and completely separate field treating the nervous system. However, I’ve found it interesting that psychiatrists are routinely called…