Pacific Brain and Spine Medical Group Newsletter

February 2018

Baby Boomer Bass Guitarist Keeps on Rockin’ after Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

When Vincent Ruiz, 72, isn’t walking three miles around Lake Chabot with his wife Herma he’s rocking out on his bass guitar, playing songs with his band to entertain seniors at residential facilities around the East Bay. Or, he’s swinging a golf club at Monarch Bay in San Leandro.

Vincent and Herma have lived in Castro Valley for 45 years. He spent 30 years in the Navy as chief petty officer before landing a job as a radiologic technologist in Walnut Creek.

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Today’s Surgical Approaches Offer Likelihood of Improvement, Faster Return to Normal Activity

Dr. Soroceanu

Surgical options for symptomatic lumbar stenosis have continued to evolve and improve.

The typical patient presents with symptoms of neurogenic claudication – pain or fatigue in the back, buttocks, and/or legs that worsens with standing or walking, and is relieved by sitting or maintaining a flexed posture. Lumbar stenosis is confirmed with an MRI. The most common indication for surgery is persistent symptoms that result in decrease in activity and quality of life. The neurologic exam is most often normal. EMG studies, if performed are often normal as well.

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January 2018

Collaboration Key to Fight against Brain Cancer

Dr. Soroceanu

Pacific Brain & Spine is dedicated to finding better ways to help patients fight brain cancer. We strive for the best strategies that improve patient outcomes with a systems approach, using advanced technologies, collaborating with teams of specialists in cancer treatment and scientific research, and applying a personalized treatment plan.


Glioblastoma is the most common cancer originating in the brain. Its cause is unknown, there is no clear way to prevent it, and it is very aggressive, having cells that reproduce quickly and are nourished by an ample blood supply. Read More

November 2017

Patient success stories

Zoie and Her Master Reunite for Daily Walks After Minimally Invasive Back Surgery

Since 1974, Peter K, 79, has been enjoying life in the Gold Country of Sonora, CA, especially since he is surrounded by his loving wife of 56 years, his two daughters, five grandchildren and seven great grandchildren who all live in the vicinity. After 40 years as a successful real estate broker, Peter has shifted his role from breadwinner to the family’s pro bono personal assistant. > Read more.

Back Surgery Gets School Principal Back in the Swim

Kara Holthe loved her work as a principal and eagerly looked forward to a retreat with her fellow school administrators during the fall of 2013. Unfortunately, with pain radiating down her back and left leg, she could hardly sit still for the two-day get away. > Read more.

October 2017

A GPS Finds Its Way to the Spine

Today the most ubiquitous consumer technologies are making their way to the operating room to treat conditions of the spine. One important example of this technology is image guided surgery – also referred to as surgical navigation. Read more >

September 2017

BrightMatter: pushing the boundaries of neuroscience and bringing new hope to patients

At Pacific Brain & Spine, we pride ourselves in using the most innovative neurosurgical technologies to make sure we achieve the best possible outcomes for patients. Read more>






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