We know at NuVasive we are making a powerful impact on patient lives, and The Better Way Back gave shareowners a chance to see it first-hand, and interact personally with four Patient Ambassadors. Diane, Abba, Lucio, and Linda visited the NuVasive San Diego headquarters last week for a panel discussion with our Shareowners.
The patients shared their stories of surgery and recovery, but also emphasized their gratitude for the way NuVasive shareowners’ daily jobs contribute to changing patient lives, as well as their entire families. Attendees left inspired with a fresh perspective of the value of their work here.
About our Patient Ambassador Visitors
Diane: Diane was told that she would need to take it easy for a while after surgery, and she describes that as the hardest part. “I was bored to death!” Needless to say, Diane got active as quickly as possible post-operatively. On the one-year anniversary of her spinal procedure, Diane was climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro–the world’s highest free-standing mountain! Since her surgery, she has also completed four half-Ironmans and a full Ironman.
Abba: Abba began experiencing pain in his upper back, arms, and neck in 2007. Over time, he lost 25% of his muscle mass. After having both an ACDF and Posterior Cervical Fusion, he is now fused from C4-T2. Even though he has been told he has fantastic range of motion for his case, he still has to find new ways to do certain activities. He is eager to share his experience and keen perspectives with anyone who may also be suffering like he did.
Lucio: Lucio’s back problems were the direct result of an auto accident. His car was hit so hard from behind, that his body suffered the equivalent thrust of seven G-forces. Now Lucio is ready to go out and live his life again. At his one month follow-up appointment, he was doing push-ups for his doctor! He advocates staying calm, eating well, having faith in your surgeon, doing your own research, and keeping a fighting spirit as you recover.
Linda: Linda describes her new life without pain as “humbling and full of gratitude.” She knew instantly after surgery that she was better, but it still took time to recover from the surgery itself. Her husband and children were her greatest support team. When asked why she wanted to be a Patient Ambassador, Linda said, “I think a lot of people with back pain do feel alone. I would like to help other people with their fears and let them know that it will be okay.”
Over the month of May, Shareowners were encouraged to gather in break rooms on their down time to fold colorful origami birds to represent “wings of hope”. This display was then hung in front of The Better Way Back wall to illustrate to the visiting patients how NuVasive strives to keep patients at the heart of our innovation.
This event was hosted by The Better Way Back® (TBWB) team. TBWB is a NuVasive program which provides support to spine patients along their journey with back pain, surgery and recovery. To learn more, go to www.tbwb.org.