The Spine & Back Blog

Woman describes neck pain to doctor using telemedicineThe use of telehealth seeks to increase access to health care by expanding means of communication between providers and patients. Interactive telecommunications equipment makes the process simple and precise. Due to the recent Covid-19 pandemic, Dr. Hunter and his staff may be able to see you through “telemedicine”.

Effective Monday, March 30, 2020, NSSC Spine Clinic will begin offering Virtual Telemedicine Visits via Skype or Face Time.

Please contact our office at 704-864-5550 if you are interested. NSSC Spine Clinic will be following normal office hours.

Dr. Hunter and his staff are committed to providing care to their patients, while taking necessary precautions to mitigate the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).

We will continue to take measures recommended by the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) to maintain a safe environment for our patients.

Please immediately reschedule your appointment at our office, if you have:

  • Recently traveled out of the country

  • Have been in close contact with someone experiencing a fever, cough, chills, or shortness of breath

  • You have recently experienced a fever, cough, chills, or shortness of breath

Should the need arise, please contact our office and we will work with you to reschedule your upcoming appointment.

Seek Medical Advice if you:

  • Develop Symptoms

  • Have been in close contact with a person known to have coronavirus

  • If you live in or have recently been in an area with an ongoing spread of coronavirus


Stem cell therapy, an innovative, non-surgical treatment for both joint and back pain, has become a viable alternative for pain relief without invasive surgery. Utilizing your own body’s stem cells, your body can in fact heal itself.

What are adult stem cells

Adult stem cells harvested from your own bone marrow have the ability to develop into other types of cells. These special types of cells are able to multiply, regenerate and self-renew. This means they have the ability to form potentially any type of tissue in your body. Because of their ability to differentiate and form different types of cells, they can be used to treat many types of injuries and regenerate damaged tissue. 

In fact, stem cells have many capabilities.  They are known to create proteins that decrease inflammation and kill bacteria, they can save dying cells, as well as, differentiate into cartilage, bone and connective tissue.

How Does Stem Cell Therapy Work

After harvesting your bone marrow from your hip, it is placed into a special filter and spun down in a centrifuge. This separates the adult stem cells from the red blood cells and plasma. Once the bone marrow has been separated, the adult stem cells, along with other growth factors in the blood, are aspirated into a syringe. The concentrated stems cells can then be injected into the targeted area.

Who Is A Good Candidate?

A good candidate for stem cell therapy is someone suffering from joint or back pain looking to improve the quality of their life, someone that wants to avoid the potential complications of surgery or a person looking to use their body’s stem cells as a method to restore their body using it’s own regenerative capabilities.


Adult stem cells are being used to treat many types of chronic pain, arthritis, and degenerative disease of joints and the spine. Soft tissue injuries such as muscle, tendon and ligaments are also being treated with stem cell therapy,

Request a consultation

Call today if you think you might be a candidate for stem cell therapy to book an appointment for a consultation. Stem cell therapy could give you the relief you are looking for!


Once a patient undergoes a formal treatment program and still has issues, it’s time to evaluate if he or she is a candidate for surgery. Most of the time – nine times out of 10 – patients do not need an operation to correct their spine issues. However, in recalcitrant cases where surgery is required, we now have an array of surgery options from which to choose to accomplish our desired goals.

Why minimally invasive?

There has been an explosion in spine surgery advances, most especially in minimally invasive surgery. Continual refinement of surgical techniques and devices now allows us to perform procedures minimally invasively that in the past required large incisions, long hospitalization and lengthy recovery times.

Advantages of minimally invasive surgery:

  • Less anesthesia
  • Smaller incisions
  • Shorter operation times
  • Decreased blood loss
  • Shorter hospital stays
  • Faster recovery times
  • We’re still able to accomplish everything we were able to do in the past, but it’s safer for the patient. Minimally invasive techniques also offer solutions for patients who have had surgery in the past.

The advantages of minimally invasive surgery over traditional, open spine surgery are undeniable. We’re on the cutting edge of both learning and teaching these techniques, and I personally travel around the globe to teach these techniques to other surgeons. It is exciting work knowing we are continually making these surgeries safer for patients so they can find relief from back pain and return to their daily routines faster.

Listed below are some of the spine problems I treat, and all of these can be cared for minimally invasively if the patient should require surgery.

Spine problems treatable with MIS:

  • Sciatica
  • Herniated discs
  • Stenosis
  • Slippage/spondylolisthesis
  • Spondylosis
  • And more!

Thankfully, most patients will never have to see the inside of the operating room. But for those who do, patients can rest easy knowing they will be accurately evaluated and diagnosed, and have access to the most cutting-edge facilities, equipment, providers and surgical techniques in the country.