Patient Stories for Orthopedic Spine Clinic

After a paralyzing injury, John’s spine care helped him make a speedy return to farming and a normal life

John McMillan at his farm
Less than four months after a spine injury temporarily paralyzed him from the neck down, John McMillan was back to farming full-time. McMillan credits his remarkable recovery to the spine care he received from orthopedic spine surgeon Andrew J. Pugely, MD, at University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics in the hours following his injury.

Expert spine care helped Gretchen get back to RAGBRAI

After Gretchen McLain suffered a devastating spine fracture, she made it her mission to complete RAGBRAI the following year. With a year of rehab, learning how to walk again, and plenty of training, McLain reached her goal.

Spine surgery delivers sweet relief

Living on 64 acres, Donovan Coffey loves being outside and taking care of the land. That’s how he discovered his passion: raising honey bees. “It really puts me in touch with nature,” Donovan says. “It’s a very pleasant experience.” That is, until he felt pain in his left shoulder.

After spine surgery, life is back to normal

“Anyone struggling with this particular problem, any back problems, I would send them to the University of Iowa and to Dr. Igram.” --Amy DeJong

Spine surgery provides relief for professor with back and leg pain

Steven Clegg
“I’d be hobbling by the time I got from my lab to my car at the end of the day,” says Steven, an Iowa City resident and professor of microbiology at the University of Iowa. “And each day felt like it was getting worse.”