Bruce Smith refuses to let obstacles slow him down. When the former landscaper was in his early 20s, nearly 40 years ago, he experienced a major neck injury that required him to undergo his first spinal surgery.
Bruce was riding his horse during a team roping competition, and the horse slipped in mud, causing the horse to fall. They both fell at the same time, and Bruce ended up with a hairline fracture in his neck.
Unfortunately, his spine issues didn’t stop there. He’s a spine surgery veteran — having gone through six additional operations on both the lower and upper areas of his spine.
His most recent, and probably most complicated, spinal surgery was going to require a true expert. Bruce was referred by two different neurosurgeons in the Bakersfield area, where he lives, to Keck Medicine of USC.
This open enrollment, make sure your plan includes Keck Medicine of USC. KeckMedicine.org/insurance
Raymond J. Hah, MD, assistant professor of clinical orthopaedic surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, was ready to take on the challenging case and get Bruce back on his feet.
“I got to the point where I was having a hard time walking and sleeping,” Bruce says. “I had constant pain and was hunched over most of the time. When I went in and talked to Dr. Hah, he told me that I needed some serious work and he could definitely fix it. That’s what I wanted to hear.”