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Denise Furfaro

Riverdale, NJ

I am six weeks post operation after my third spine surgery with Dr. Farmer. Prior to my back surgeries, I was very active. I played field hockey all through college, coached after college, worked full time, and kept up with my two daughters. My first spine surgery was a fusion to L5-S1 due to wear and tear and a car accident. That surgery was very successful, but, unfortunately, a year a half later I was still in a lot of pain. I went back to see Dr. Farmer and found out that I had an annular tear to L4-L5. After my second spine surgery, the recovery was very different from the first, involving complications post operation while still in the hospital. I had two pulmonary embolisms that traveled to my lungs and had to have an emergency transfer to New York Presbyterian to receive an IVC filter to prevent further clotting. Even after being released home, I never felt fully recovered and still experienced constant pain in my lower back. After my six month post operation check-up with Dr. Farmer, he found that my bone was not fusing around the hardware. We decided to wait another six months to see if there would be any more progress. At my one year post operation appointment, Dr. Farmer broke the unfortunate news to me. I was in need for a revision surgery. On March 16, 2015, I went in for my third spinal surgery and second fusion on L4-L5. Surgery lasted seven and a half hours, but as soon as I woke up in the recovery room, I knew something had gone right. Dr. Farmer was amazed at how well the surgery went and how well I was recovering. I left the hospital after four days feeling like a new person. This is the first time in many years that I finally feel pain-free. I am eternally grateful for Dr. Farmer and all of the other doctors and nurses at HSS for all of the help and support they have given me. Now, being six weeks post operation from my third spine surgery, I am proud to say that I am ready to get back in the game!