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Towards finding medicinal alternative to spine surgery

Ramesh Susarla


Guntur-based surgeon and other team members have won the prestigious Euro-Spine Award


GUNTUR: Who does not wish to avoid a surgical intervention if severe pain in the back due to spinal disc degeneration/diffusion can be corrected with medicines?

Guntur-based spine surgeon Jonnaladinne Naresh Babu and his co-researcher S. Rajasekharan of Ganga Hospital in Coimbatore are exactly attempting to achieve this. They have become the first Indians to receive the prestigious Euro-Spine Award for best research in spine surgery.

Three other members also form part of their team.

The award instituted by the Spine Society of Europe was conferred on them for their four-year work on ‘Pharmalogical Enhancement of Disc Diffusion and Differentiation of Healthy, Ageing and Degenerated Discs’.

It carried a cash prize of 10,000 Euros and a citation. The award was presented by Spine Society of Europe president Robert Guntzberg at Geneva in Switzerland on May 27 as part of the Spine Week celebrations at which several spine surgeons from all over the world presented their research projects.

The prize money would be utilised to further research in providing a pharmalogical alternative to spine surgery in as many cases as possible, Dr. Naresh told The Hindu on Sunday. Some 80 per cent of the people in India suffer from back pain for some reason or the other and 90 per cent of them do not require surgery, he observed.

Clinical trials

First Clinical Trials were being conducted on human beings and once the entire process of three-stage clinical trials was over, its acceptability as an alternative treatment would be finalised, the spine surgeon pointed out.

This was the ninth international award the Guntur doctor had received in addition to eight national-level awards. His work on complex fracture management was published in the International Standard Text Book of Campbell’s operative Orthopaedics, a rare honour for an Indian surgeon.

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