Benefit from the latest expertise in surgical and non-surgical spinal techniques with leading specialist

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Professor Arun Ranganathan is one of the UK’s leading spinal surgeons. Having completed three spinal fellowships and surgical training in London, Leeds, Newcastle and Toronto, he was appointed a young consultant at the age of 35 in Barts Health NHS Trust. He recently achieved a world’s first, performing Spine Straightening Scoliosis surgery live on national television on Channel 5’s Operation Live.

Working under world-renowned spinal surgeons Prof Fehlings and Dr. Stephen Lewis, one of his most impressive achievements to date has been the completion of the prestigious North America Advanced Spine fellowship from Krembil Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.

Professor Ranganathan is dually certified in Orthopaedic and Spinal Neurosurgery. He has extensive expertise in all forms of adult and paediatric spinal deformity including osteotomies, complex spinal reconstructions and tumour surgery.

With over 20 years’ spinal surgery experience, Mrs Anne Mitchener is a vastly experienced consultant neurosurgeon, who specialises in the treatment of degenerate spine, including referred pain in the back, neck, arms, and legs. She is a firm advocate of the use of non-operative approaches, such as injections, and the latest minimally invasive surgical techniques.

Specialist Paediatric Consultant Mr Thomas Crompton is available to see children for any orthopaedic condition, including spine.

Spine anatomy

The spine, also called the backbone, plays a vital role in stability, smooth movement and protection of the delicate spinal cord. It is made up of bony segments called vertebrae with fibrous tissue called intervertebral discs between them. The vertebrae and discs form the spinal column from the head to the pelvis, giving symmetry and support to the body.

The spine can be divided into 4 parts: cervical, thoracic, lumbar and sacral. The cervical spine comprises the first 7 vertebrae of the spinal column, which form the neck. It is highly mobile compared to other regions of the spine and has transverse foramina in each vertebra through which the vertebral arteries supply blood to the brain.

The Thoracic spine is the central region, which runs from the base of the neck to the bottom of your rib cage, comprising the next 12 vertebrae. Its main task is to provide the flexibility that holds the body upright, supporting posture and protecting the organs of the chest.

The lumbar spine is composed of the lower 5 vertebrae, making 24 in total along the length of the column. These vertebrae are taller and bulkier than the rest of the spine. Primarily this is because the lower back must withstand higher pressure due to body weight and other movements such as lifting, pulling and twisting. In some individuals, an extra or sixth lumbar vertebra may be present, which can cause complications such as decreased flexibility and bulging or herniated discs.

Finally, below the lumbar spine but connected to it lies the sacrum, which is a triangular bone at the base of the column which slots into the two pelvic bones.

spine anatomy