“Blue Nude” by Pablo Picasso, 1902
This narrative comes from Chelsea Rubinstein, a young woman I met recently at a seminar. After hearing me mention that I had a website dedicated to telling personal healthcare stories complemented with resources and information to educate, enlighten, empower, and encourage others on their own “patient path,” Chelsea shared her story with me. Then she offered to post it on this site in the hope that it would benefit others struggling with extensive spinal issues and back pain—and considering what to do about it.
If you have spinal deformation or degenerative disc disease and are looking for information and support, you will find it here. In Chelsea’s words:
After two years of physical deterioration, pain, and mental anguish, I finally had the surgery my doctor recommended—and it took away my pain. Afterward, he asked me to write this narrative, suggesting that if I could save even one person from the suffering I endured, it would make everything I went through worthwhile.
Chelsea chose November 1, 2016 as the date to publish her story in part to commemorate the twenty-second anniversary of her first back surgery when she was eleven years old. And it was four years ago this month that she made a very difficult decision about a second procedure that would affect the rest of her life.