The Spine & Back Blog

SPINE HEALTH AND BACK PAIN PREVENTION LUNCH AND LEARN (Gastonia, NC)Dr. William Hunter was the featured presenter for a Lunch and Learn at the Warlick YMCA (Gaston County Family YMCA) last week.  There was a great turnout, as 35 people attended the educational event. Dr. Hunter spoke on behalf of both NSSC Spine Clinic (Neuroscience & Spine Center of the Carolinas) and the Medical Aesthetics Regenerative Center (MARC), discussing important topics related to spine health and back pain prevention, as well as stem cell therapy.

Spine Health and Prevention of Back Pain

Back problems and related pain can be extremely debilitating, especially as individuals grow older. Dr. Hunter provided education and discussed common back problems, the anatomy of the spine, treatments for back pain including physical therapy as well as the importance for exercise, stretching, and working on core strength for spine health. He also stressed the importance of good nutrition and stress management, for overall health - "A body in motion stays in motion."

Additionally, Dr Hunter discussed common back surgeries and how many back and spine surgeries can now be done on a minimally invasive, outpatient basis.

Stem Cell Therapy (and treatments)

STEM CELL THERAPY (Gastonia, NC)Doctor Hunter then discussed how he has been using stem cell therapy as part of his spinal fusion surgeries since 2008 to assist in the fusion of bone and recovery. Furthermore, Dr. Hunter has been doing stem cell treatments, which can regenerate damaged tissue and reduce pain, for joints such as knee, hip, and shoulders. Dr. Hunter discussed the benefits of stem cell therapy, as well as the difference between platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections and Stem cell therapy.

Finally, the presentation ended after a long Q & A session with Doctor Hunter and the staff from the NSSC Spine Clinic and MARC.

Dr. William Hunter, Back And Spine Specialist

If you are concerned about back or neck pain you've been experiencing, make an appointment with Dr. Hunter, spine specialist and neurosurgeon at NSSC Spine Clinic. He has the experience and expertise needed to treat all types of back pain. The NSSC Spine Clinic has been serving Gastonia and the broader Charlotte, NC area including Belmont, Mount Holly, Gaston County, Meckleburg County, and portions of South Carolina for over 22 years.

Medical Aesthetics Regenerative Center

Medical Aesthetics Regenerative Center, Gastonia, North CarolinaMedical Aesthetics Regenerative Center (MARC) specializes in personalized treatments utilizing innovative technologies and the latest advances in science, medicine and holistic healthcare, including stem cell therapy, weight management, aesthetic rejuvenation, botox neurotoxin injections, PRP, microdermabrasion and more. MARC has been serving Gastonia and the broader Charlotte, North Carolina area for over 15 years. To learn more, contact MARC today.

2022 WARLICK FAMILY YMCA TRICK OR TRAIL RUNJoin Dr. William Hunter and staff as we participate in the Warlick Family YMCA Trick or Trail Run at the Warlick Family YMCA on Saturday, October 22nd

Warlick Family YMCA
2221 Robinwood Road
Gastonia, NC US 28054

As the title sponsor, all of us at the Neuroscience & Spine Center of the Carolinas would love to see you come out, have a great time, and support a wonderful organization.

Warlick Family YMCA

The Trick or Trail Run supports the Warlick Family YMCA, a non-profit organization committed to helping members of our community live a balanced, healthy life in spirit, mind, and body. The YMCA makes a positive impact in the Gaston County community by encouraging wellness and family on their beautiful 118-acre campus.


5K and 1-mile Fun Run on the Sytz Trail
at the Warlick Family YMCA

  • 8:00am 5K begins
  • 9:00am Fun Run begins
  • 9:30-11:30am After Party

What does the 5K Trail Look Like? 
Both the 5K race and 1 Mile Fun Run courses are on the Sytz Trail System at the Warlick Family YMCA.
View a map of the Sytz Trail System.

Can I dress up in costume?
Please do! It makes the race even more fun! Plus, the after race party will include prizes for best costume and performance. Dogs included!

Register Now

Visit the Warlick Family YMCA Trick or Trail Run website to register now.

Warlick Family YMCA Trick or Trail 5k Trail Run and 1 Mile Fun Run

Medical Aesthetics Regenerative Center (MARC) - Gastonia, North CarolinaOur sister practice, Medical Aesthetics Regenerative Center (MARC), is pleased to announce the opening of their second location on July 11th! MARC will be expanding their services and will partner with Optimum Result Fitness of Gastonia, NC to provide the best health and wellness solutions in the broader Gastonia, North Carolina area.

Optimum Result Fitness is more than just a health club. They are a facility that provides physical therapy with Ivy Rehab, massage therapy, yoga, boxing classes, as well as strength training, and more.

MARC Office at Optimum Result Fitness (Gastonia)The new MARC practice at Optimum Result Fitness will provide many health, anti-aging, and wellness services. MARC will be adding weight loss therapy, hormone replacement therapy, IV Hydration, aesthetic rejuvenation, neurotoxin treatments, as well as stem cell treatments and PRP injections for joint pain therapy.

The new MARC practice will be open to both the public and Optimum Results members at this new location. Schedule an appointment TODAY for an evaluation by one of their therapists or contact their office at 704-868-6100.

MARC Office at Optimum Results Fitness (Gastonia NC)MARC at Optimum Results Fitness
3372 Robinwood Road
Gastonia, NC 28054
Directions / Map

Opening on July 11th, 2022!

XLIF® procedure: Placing the femoral nerve from anterior to posterior position

Dr. William D. Hunter of Gastonia, N.C., performs an XLIF® procedure. The nerve featured here was found to be in the anterior position. It is safer to have the nerve placed posteriorly. The video demonstrates a technique used to safely place the nerve in the posterior position. Once the nerve’s position is altered, the XLIF® procedure can continue – the disk can be removed and the graft can be placed.



Hello, this is a video to describe how to move the femoral nerve posteriorly safely when performing an XLIF procedure. After making the skin incision, you can see there’s a fat plane which we dissect through. Once the fat plane is identified we can then identify the fascial plane which is above the muscle area. We clearly can see the muscle plane, and you need to clearly identify the muscle region. Taking the fascial plane away from the muscle is important. This then allows us to enter into the retroperitoneal space using a single finger dissection. Once in the retroperitoneal space, we can then place our initial dilator. The black dilator then goes on top of the psoas muscle, and then using the neural monitoring system, we can traverse through the psoas muscle. This is going to help identify where the nerve is located - whether it’s anterior, superior, inferior, or posterior - using the white mark. At this point in time we notice that the initial dilating, monitoring system is telling us that the nerve in anterior. Instead of taking the whole dilator out and starting all over again. We proceed with placing the k-wire and then the additional dilators into the region. We do know that the nerve is anterior to our dissection. We will be able to move the nerve posteriorly; however, we need to have better visualization. In doing so, we then place the additional dilators: the purple and then also the blue dilator. Again, this is telling us that the nerve is anterior. We then place the retractor system using AP and lateral x-rays, we fully identify the location of how the retractor system is set. Having the k-wire then placed, we take all the retractor systems out and initial dilators out. Then we use the neural monitoring system, noting that there is a nerve anterior. Below the suction, and right where the monitoring system was noted. At this point in time, we try to see whether we can fully identify the nerve itself. Sometimes we may need to have to adjust the retractor system, and clearly between these two instruments you can see the large femoral nerve. What we now want to do is try to establish an area interior to this nerve; therefore, we’ll continue to dissect the region and identify an anterior region for placement of the k-wire. With this dissection, we can clearly see that there is a disc anterior to the anterior part of that nerve. Because of the micro-bleeding, we will go ahead and proceed with the bipolars to bipolar the micro bleeding in the region closest to the posterior fade. Once this has been completed, we then can take the k-wire, which is currently posterior to the nerve, and place anterior to the nerve. The critical component is doing this under direct visualization. At this stage, you can see that the k-wire will now be removed and placed anteriorly. Once the k-wire is placed anteriorly, we then place the initial black dilator. Now, we subsequently remove the retractor system. Once the retractor system is removed, we then place the second dilator and then the last balloon dilator, noting that the nerve is now posterior. We then proceed in placing the retractor system again using a neuro-monitoring system, we know that the nerve is posterior to the blade. We then open the retractor system, and we can now see that there is muscle - small muscle bands above the disk material. Prior to doing anything with that muscle, it is imperative that we use the neuro monitoring system again to make sure that the nerve is posterior. Once we know that the nerve is posterior to the posterior blade, we are now in the safe zone. We use x-rays - AP and lateral - to help identify the location of the disc with regard to our retractor system. Once we feel we are in the safe zone - after using the monitoring system again to fully identify that the nerve is posterior to the posterior blade, and that the muscle is off of the disc - we place the shim, which will then help secure the retractor system in place. Then use an identifier to help note that we are in the safe zone, and that we have plenty of room to perform our discectomy, and then once the discectomy is performed, to place our graft and perform a fusion. This is the technique to place the nerve posterior to the posterior blade.