Press Release

For Immediate Release
Nov 16, 2011
Contact : Joyce McFadden, Vice President, Marketing and Public Relations  

Manahawkin Pain Specialist Physician Offers Innovative Treatment for Back Pain.


Manahawkin, NJ - Each year over 1.2 million people in this country are diagnosed with lumbar spinal stenosis or LSS. Southern Ocean Medical Center Pain Management Specialist Ashraf Sakr, M.D. is now offering an innovative, minimally invasive treatment to provide relief from this painful condition.

"Patients suffering from LSS have pain when walking and sometimes numbness that limits their ability to walk or stand," says Dr. Ashraf. "LSS is a result of the narrowing of the lower spinal canal, a condition often found in people over 50 years of age and the predisposition for this increases with age."

According to Dr. Sakr the bony channel that encloses the spinal cord is called the spinal canal. Usually, there is enough space between the spinal cord and the canal so the nerves are free of obstruction. However, as people age the ligaments and bones around the spinal canal may thicken and begin to press on the spinal canal causing it to narrow. This is the condition known as spinal stenosis. The narrowing can compress or pinch nerve tissues causing pain, numbness and limited mobility for the patient.

"Today, we have a safe new outpatient procedure that can reduce the pain associated with this condition and increase the patient's mobility as well," he says. "Known as the mild procedure, this minimally invasive approach is performed an outpatient setting, requires only local anesthesia and mild sedation and patients generally return home the same day as the procedure," he says. "All of this accomplished through a tiny incision requiring no stitches. Recovery is very quick and most patients experience improvement within a few days."

Dr. Sakr is board certified in pain management and anesthesiology and is a certified mild physician. He practices in Manahawkin and can be reached at 609-978-8900, extension 2189 or 609-978-0002.

About Southern Ocean Medical Center
Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin is a member of the Meridian Health family, which includes Jersey Shore University Medical Center and K. Hovnanian Children's Hospital in Neptune, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, and most recently, Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel.

Southern Ocean Medical Center is home to a wide range of clinical services and programs specializing in cardiovascular and stroke care, maternity and women's health, orthopedics and joint health, bariatric surgery, and wellness and prevention programs.

Part of Meridian Cancer Care, Southern Ocean Medical Center provides comprehensive cancer services, including radiation oncology, surgery, and clinical trials, and is connected to specialized programs and services throughout Meridian Health.

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