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I consulted 3 orthopedists and 3 neurosurgeons regarding my spine. Five out of 6 recommended a 3 level fusion as did Dr. Vaccaro. He was very pleasant and explained everything fully. The PA he had that day was very robotic though and gave the same answer to all my questions such as it may or may not happen or "I can't answer that." The concern I had though was Dr. Vaccaro's reaction to my pain medicine. When he found out I was on 2 mg of an opiod narcotic only at night to help me sleep, he looked concerned and sent me to consult for pain management to slowly get me off and find an alternative. He doesn't prescribe any pain medicine himself. Which I found very concerning in a surgeon. If I were to have the surgery he felt I would go through withdrawal type pain. I was very shocked as I barely felt the effects of the drug when I took it at night to sleep. I'd also like to add, I barely even drink alcohol and I've never smoked so I'm the farthest from an addict. I told him I didn't need help getting off the drug, I could just stop tonight. But he insisted I see the pain management doctor right away within Rothman. Well, the pain management doctor was confused too. He felt the 2 mg wasn't much and I had only been on it at night for 2 weeks, not an amount you get addicted to. I was quite frustrated that I had to take an hour drive in extreme pain. Most doctors warned me that even a small fall could paralyze me, so a bumpy ride in horrible pain was the last thing I wanted to do. In reading other reviews about other surgeons at Rothman, I have read the same experience. Which saddens me, as I need help again with a surgeon and I'm afraid I won't get proper pain medicine if I were to chose a Rothman surgeon. I feel Dr. Vaccaro is an excellent surgeon but, because of this experience and the cold PA who would be seeing me the most, I feared not getting adequate pain management for my open spine surgery, so I did not feel comfortable with Rothman.
Doctor Vaccaro, is The best doctor in the USA in my opinion, you could not find a better surgeon anywhere in the USA. He performed my back surgery , and repaired my spine.
Dr. Vaccaro is a marvelous, highly skilled orthopedic spine surgeon. My wife, suffering from relapse of her 1st scoliosis surgery, was in tremendous pain and taking the maximum dose of morphine with virtually no relief. Dr. Christian Fras, our primary spine surgeon (also an excellent, caring physician), recommended Dr. Vaccaro because of the type of spinal relapse afflicting my wife. We were hoping that Dr. Vaccaro would assist Dr. Fras in the 2nd surgery, but it required Dr. Vaccaro to get special permission to partake in said surgery at Lankenau Hospital where Dr. Fras was to perform the surgery. At the last moment, and with my wife in ever-increasing agonizing pain, Dr. Fras was able to get my wife set up for her surgery at Jefferson. Also participating in my wife's surgery at Jefferson, was Dr. Ashwini D. Sharan, an excellent neurosurgeon, and oft surgical partner to Dr. Vaccaro. Needless to say, these highly talented surgeon's virtually saved my wife's life. We will forever be grateful for the excellent care and treatment my wife received at Jefferson as well as by Dr. Fras and his staff.
On August 20th, 2015 I woke up at 3am in the worst pain of my life. It felt like a pulled muscle in my neck, but after 2 X-rays, loads of medicine I knew it was something more serious. An MRI showed that I had several herniations at my C5-C7 level of my cervical spine. I was told by a doctor at Rothman that the herniations are pushing on my spinal cord which explains the horrible shooting pain down my left arm. I scheduled an appt with Dr. Vaccaro regarding surgery and boy am I happy I did that. Here I am 2 days removed from surgery and pain free. Dr. Vaccaro and his staff were truly amazing, professional and caring. Now it's up to me to take it easy (which is going to be difficult) and let the healing process take place. Rothman and Dr. Vaccaro are top notch in my eyes.
I cannot speak highly enough about my experience with Dr. Vaccaro. He was beyond helpful in my consultation, confident in his diagnosis and my surgery went much better than I had even hoped for. Every single staff member that I dealt with was friendly and helpful during my consultations and on the day of my surgery, and I was amazed at how smoothly the surgery itself went. I couldn't have asked for a better experience. Six weeks ago I could barely walk, and now I have almost no restrictions on my day to day activities.
My situation was probably a little different than most. When I arrived at the facility, I was in extreme pain. I was unable to sit, stand or walk more than 15-20 feet. The staff was amazing. I was brought into an exam room where I was able to lie down and be comfortable. Dr. Vaccaro was exceptionally professional and clearly explained what was happening with my spine, as well as the treatment options. Surgery was to be scheduled that same day. While waiting for a bed to become available at Jefferson, the staff made sure I was able to lie down in an exam room that was not being utilized. The procedure went very well and I was up and walking later that evening. It was truly unbelievable that I went from having debilitating pain to being able to walk within a only few hours. My family and I cannot thank Dr. Vaccaro and his staff enough for helping me.
In April of 2015 I started having a recurring problem with pain from a herniated disc that would not get better with therapy or back injections. I was in so much pain I could hardly stand or sit for more than a few minutes at a time. Nothing would ease the incredible pain I was having. When I met Dr. Vaccaro he went over all of my xrays and explained exactly what he was going to be able to do to help me. When he told me I would have no pain after the procedure I was relieved and he was right I had no more back pain. Within 2 weeks I was back at work and in 3 months I had no restrictions and I can go back to the gym.
Dr. Vaccaro and staff were very professional and courteous. Dr. Vaccaro was very down to earth and kind. He took the time to explain all he needed to fix. He has made me a person who couldn't walk for more than 15 minutes and now I walk for miles!
My experience with Dr. Vaccaro was life changing. He made new whole again!!
From the moment I met Dr. Vaccaro and his assistant Mila Furman, I knew I was in GREAT hands at the Rothman Institute (I found out I not only had a herniated disc, I also had arthritis in my cervical spine that was compromising my legs). I had to have the BEST specialist in this field and Dr. Vaccaro was and is that doctor. Dr. Vaccaro went into great detail, walking me through my MRI films and discussing having cervical spine fusion surgery. I know I made the right decision not only with just picking the Rothman Institute, but to be blessed enough to have Dr. Alexander Vaccaro as "my" surgeon who performed it. Thank You Dr. Vaccaro and Mila Furman for being "You!"
Two years ago I was diagnosed with a herniated disk which resulted in debilitating leg pain. Dr. Vaccaro scheduled spinal surgery after his review of my condition. However, he suggested I pursue aggressive Physical Therapy first to see if that would clear up the problem. I am most grateful to Dr. Vaccaro for allowing me to pursue a non-surgical course of action. It worked and I am most appreciative of his conservative approach.
I was greatly impressed that Dr. Vaccaro clearly explained what my problem was and was extremely confident that he would correct my back problem
Dr.Vaccaro displayed a real concern for me and my condition. He really expressed genuine interest in wanting to help me. He was so happy and proud after the operation when he showed me the x-rays that displayed the amount of spinal correction that he was able to accomplish.
Dr. Vaccaro was knowledgeable, skilled, professional and inspired confidence. He gave me my life back. Excellence in medical care as well as surgery and he took time with me and my husband to answer any and all questions we had prior to surgery. Post surgery care was also stellar. Thank you and God bless you, Dr. Vaccaro !
Top notch and great food at the hospital he owns, which is where he performs surgery, I had cervical spine decompression and fusion of the c6 and c7
performed spinal fusion on me and gave me my life back. A friend recommended me and it was very sound advise. I highly recommend this gentleman and Rothman
I'm so appreciative that, due to Dr. Vaccaro's skill and knowledge, my life was given back to me. I haven't had a regret since my surgery was performed. Before, I was relegated to a life on the couch, only getting around after taking a mild pain med. Not much of a life. I'm now doing everything.....swimming, biking and enjoying life with all my family. Was I scared, you bet I was, but it was the best decision of my life.
Dr. Vaccaro was like a person I knew all my life. He made me feel like I knew him for years. He was very down to earth and listened to the problems I was having in my back while looking at the MRI's of both the neck and my back and explained to me I had problems both with my back and my neck but the most serious problem was with my neck, which I had to take care of sooner than my back. The funny part is I was going to have minor knee surgery and he said you will cancel the knee surgery and you will do the neck surgery ASAP! The knee surgery was going to be done by a Rothman doctor, Dr. Pepe, which I had done later, by him, but right now we're talking about Dr. Vaccaro who completed an unbelievable surgery on my neck, which consisted of going in through the front, putting a plate and then going in the back, putting in another plate, 18 screws, a bunch of other things, which only he can describe, and here I am today, with great motion in my neck. He is an outstanding, caring doctor, who is just a regular person if you met him. You would want him to be a part of your family. I could go on and on and talk about him, he cared so much about me, even when he wasn't in the hospital he had his staff constantly checking on my condition to a point where I was asking them why don't you get a bed in my room and they said any operation done by Dr. Vaccaro, if he's not in the building he insures that we check the patient and constantly contact him on the progress of the patient. He himself, when in the hospital, you will see him, he does not act that he's better than anybody else, and that's what I like about him. I am just a regular person, I don't have wealth and he treated me like a real great person, like I was a Duke or a King and here he is one of the Greatest Surgeons treating me that way. It is unbelievable and while visiting him so many time in his office that's the way he treats everyone. The key to his operations is you must, and I'm going to repeat this again, YOU MUST FOLLOW HIS DIRECTIONS TO GETTING BETTER!
I was in so much pain and no quality of life. Thanks to Dr. Vaccaro got my life back and I am pain free, thankful, and happy.
Dr. Vaccaro is an excellent doctor who I would definitely recommend to anyone suffering with back pain. Not only was he a wonderful surgeon, who helped cure excruciating back pain I suffered with, but his staff was very helpful, knowledgeable, professional and provided wonderful care, along with Dr. Vaccaro.
I have previously written a review, just after my surgery which was on 05/02/2013. I am almost 1 and a half years out now, doing very well. I have returned to full time work doing HVAC service work. VERY long drives w/o cruise control can bring about sciatic pain in my leg. The muscle degeneration that I was experiencing pre surgery has pretty much resolved itself. Looking at my 2 legs now, there is barely a difference. I basically live pain free. I am still thankful to Dr Vaccaro for the skill he used in my treatment. One thing that all spinal surgery patients have to remember is we have to be careful about what we do, and how we do it.
I drove over an hour for a lumbar consultation at Rothman in Center City because of their reputation.Although I had an appointment, I waited 3 hours to see Dr. Vaccaro. When he finally came into the room, he sat down, looked at my MRI & began to dictate the notes his Resident took. When he finished, he stood up & asked me 1 question about my pain. Then he told me not to come back until I have a discogram. As he was exiting the room, my husband stopped him to say we had some questions. His answers was short, rushed & he made an insulting assumption about my medical providers. The time he spent with me was literally less than 5 minutes. My husband & I felt that this visit was a waste of time & I bet he will charge my insurance $500. I have worked in a hospital for 30 years & his bedside manner sucks! He may be a good surgeon, but he will never be a great surgeon due to his attitude & lack of compassion. When I left his office, I felt empty & sad. I will not be returning. The only nice thing I can say is that the check-in clerks were nice & the Resident.
I promise that Alex will spend less than 90 seconds with you before he starts recording his doctor's notes. Student doctors and interns handle his interviews at office visits; he is in & out in less than 5 minutes. My surgery didn't work and he pushed me off to a colleague, who quickly dropped me as a patient saying there was no more he could do. (I was operated on again 15 months later in DE and am doing fine now.) Contacting Alex after hours was impossible. He left me in some serious pain for nearly a year. If you do go to him, remember my comments and run when you recognize that your treatment was as mine...
I come from a family of doctors, so I am quite sympathetic to them and understand not only how tough their job is but also how valuable their time is. But this was different. Fastest visit I've ever had with any dr. And that's not a good thing. I've never experienced anyhing like this ever. He didn't want to know about my symptoms/condition and wasn't interested in letting me ask questions, which is kind of necessary when deciding whether or not to have major surgery. He was 2 hrs late for my 9 am appt, and used my appointment to get back on schedule. I'm not exaggerating when I say he came in, talked quickly at me (not to me) for 30 seconds, then whipped out his dictaphone and began wrapping up the visit. I said I had some questions, which he answered as quickly as possible. When we walked out of the room not even 4 minutes later, my family and I looked at each other and said, "What just happened?" I still can't make heads or tails of it. A 2 hr wait for a 3 minute visit. Absolutely crazy. His complete disinterest in talking to or listening to his patient was rude and bordered on offensive. It was unreal
Dr. Vaccaro is absolutely amazing. I broke my back in a terrible car accident when I 16 years old. Dr. Vaccaro was attentive, polite, and made my entire family feel comfortable about the impending critical surgery. During each of my follow-up visits, Dr. Vaccaro took the time to answer the numerous questions that I asked. I followed all of his advice, which allowed me to compete in ice hockey at a D1 level in college. It has been 12 years since the surgery and my back is better than ever. Without his expertize, my athletic career may have been bleak.
I was very pleased with the results of my spinal surgery done by Dr. Vaccaro! He is an extremely knowledgeable and gifted surgeon and one of the best surgeons I have ever known! Thanks to Dr. Vaccaro, I am now able to walk without a walker or cane!
My wife, following her 1st surgery for severe scoliosis, had an unexpected relapse with the bottom of her spine slowly collapsing and crushing her sciatic nerve in the process. We received a recommendation and great support from our 1st surgeon to consider Dr. Alex Vaccaro and his orthopedic spine team at Jefferson for a 2nd surgery (as the Jefferson University Hospital and facilities is very well known for it's capability to handle the kind of complicated spine surgery my wife required). Further, Dr. Vacarro is considered to be one of the finest and most experienced spine surgeons in the US. The surgical and post surgical skill and care that Dr. Vaccaro and his wonderful team provided my wife was absolutely excellent. I would also like to point out that Dr. Vaccaro's operating partner and key team member, Dr. Ashwini Sharan (a senior neuro-surgeon at Jefferson), also played a very key role in my wife's successful spine operation. My wife is now, after almost 6 months since her operation, doing better than she had been for the last 3 to 4 years, and she is still getting better day-by-day. We both are forever greatful to Dr. Vaccaro (and Dr. Sharan, the rest of the spine team and the great folks in Jefferson's Neuro ICU) for providing my wife with such wonderful care and support, and for helping to give both of us a 'new lease on life', if you will.
I had a bad accident with a couple surgeries and then was told my spine was too shattered and was going to get worse, I saw dr. vaccaro and dr ponnapan in Atl city, nj and both doctors were right on with the diagnosis, Dr. vaccaro was excellent and his physician assistant Natalie, he is the only spine surgeon I will ever trust. I talk about him frequently and tell everyone he is my hero,because of him I am not in a wheelchair. I thank him and god everyday.
Dr. Vacarro did a wonderful job correcting my scoliosis but the broken neck afterwards was a nightmare. 3 years later, I'm still dealing with severe muscle atrophy. I felt he gave up on me. I ended up going to HUP with Dr. Marcotte who has a better bedside manner and is interested in my quality of life. I had 2 neck surgeries with Dr. Vacarro which correct the break but I had severe head drop syndromw. The last 2 surgeries with Dr. Marcotte did the trick. I was in a cervical halo and am finally seeing improvement with intense PT.
Dr. Vaccaro is amazing . He performed a very long and involved spinal surgery and fusion on me 3 years ago . Had he not operated , I would be in a wheel chair for the remainder of my life . I am 65 years old and can now ambulate by myself without a cane or assistance . He is by far the best physician I have ever met .
Dr Vaccaro convinced me to do the "right surgery"not the easier and half measure that I was opting for and now 3 months after the surgery,I am ready to get back on my bike.Three months earlier I could barely get out of bed and was in constant pain.I listened and and followed his protocol and his was right on.I am glad I went to see Dr Vaccaro for a second opinion,I trusted him and he didn't let me down.
I have put off my surgery for many years, but Dr Vaccaro is the best at what he does. If you looking for someone that cares and takes his time along with his staff you need to take the time to meet with him. He knows what he is doing and I am so very happy with my surgery and that I had it done.
everyone at Rothman and Jefferson were outstanding