The pain not only interfered with holiday festivities, but also prevented her from completing everyday activities like walking and driving. Even lying down or standing up could trigger excruciating pain, making it impossible to get out of bed some days.
"I missed my baby's first Christmas. I was heartbroken," recalls Erin. "In our home movies, you see my husband and daughters opening gifts together, and then there's me - sitting across the room in pain."
Determined to get back her life, Erin made an appointment at Upper Bucks Orthopaedics for the Monday following Christmas and was diagnosed with a herniated disc. Apprehensive about surgery, Erin chose to try steroid injections and physical therapy. Despite several weeks of treatment her pain persisted.
"I was in agony both physically and emotionally. I couldn't even put on my shoes, much less hold my child. I just couldn't be the mom I wanted to be," says Erin. "My husband was basically a single parent during all of this."
When a second round of shots produced no pain relief, Erin turned to Ernest Cope, III, MD, a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon specializing in spinal surgery at Grand View Hospital. After their meeting, Erin decided to move forward with surgery. Within a week, Dr. Cope was scheduled to perform Erin's procedure at Grand View Hospital where comprehensive spinal care using advanced surgical techniques is available to treat a range of conditions.
"I never had surgery before. So when I arrived at the hospital, I was really nervous," Erin said. "Fortunately, the nurses made sure I was comfortable with everything."
As the anesthesia wore off, Erin realized her back felt better than it had in months. Only hospitalized overnight, Erin returned home to her family confident she was on track to recovery. Six weeks later she began physical therapy at Grand View Sports Medicine twice-weekly for six weeks.
Within a few months following surgery, Erin was able to participate in activities she had longed to do before the procedure - from playing with her children, to dancing with her husband at a wedding. The family even vacationed at Disneyland where she walked comfortably throughout the park.
"I missed so much last Christmas because of my back pain." says Erin. "Now my kids have their mom back. This holiday season is an especially magical one with our two little girls."