Tyler Pratt knows how to find people. An executive recruiter who runs his own firm in Rockford, he specializes in selecting executive candidates for health care clients. That knowledge served him well when it came time to find a solution to his pain.
An athlete in high school, he’d played football, basketball, ran track and wrestled. He even overcame a severe sports injury at that time, “back before MRIs,” as he notes, when he suffered damage to his lower back.
Now 60, he’d kept in top shape over the years. However, in recent years, escalating back pain with no relief led him to seek out a more permanent solution.
“I lived with it for years and was getting some relief from injections from an anesthesiologist,” he recalls. “Finally, it became too much.”
His pain specialist referred him to Michael Roh, M.D., a spine surgeon with Rockford Spine Center.
“With my health care connections, I started asking around and talked to numerous people,” he says. “They kept saying ‘go see Dr. Roh.’”
By the time of his first visit to RSC in the summer of 2015, Pratt’s pain was off the chart.
“I’d come to the point where I could barely function in any position,” he remembers. “I just couldn’t find a way to get away from the pain and I knew I had to deal with it.”
Despite Pratt’s pain levels, Dr. Roh was confident that a straightforward solution was available.
“Tyler had a severe case of nerve root compression with stress fractures and spinal instability,” explains Dr. Roh.
During the procedure, Dr. Roh relieved the nerve compression and installed rods to stabilize Pratt’s spine. “The surgery was not unusual,” says Dr. Roh. “He was in excellent physical condition which really helped in his postoperative recovery.”
Pratt recalls Dr. Roh mentioning that the results were “textbook” and his recovery was very smooth.
“He said I’d wake up without any pain and I didn’t even have a twinge.” Pratt says. “I got a new lease on life and I really don’t know what I would have done, were it not for the surgery.”
Today, almost a year after the October 2015 procedure, Pratt continues to exercise vigorously while still being careful of his back. And, he says, his due diligence paid off.
“I couldn’t have been more impressed with how professional and accommodating Dr. Roh and his team were,” he says. “They gave me the realities, explained why I was having pain and outlined the options without going right to surgery. Dr. Roh was genuine and honest. Thank goodness, he’s in Rockford, Illinois.”