All you need to know

What is “pins and needles”?

‘Pins and needles’ (paraesthesia or limbs ‘falling asleep’) is a sensation of uncomfortable tingling, usually felt in the hands or feet. A common cause is awkward postures that compress the nerves. Tingling sensations can also be symptomatic of nerve damage or nervous system disorders. 


My condition is urgent. What can I do?

We aim to attend to urgent conditions in the most timely and efficient manner. We allow time for urgent appointments on a regular basis. Arrangements can be made for patients to be seen outside normal consulting hours if absolutely necessary. To assess the urgency of your problem we require clinical information (as detailed as possible) about your symptoms and radiological investigations performed.

Usually, your doctor’s referral and your CT/MRI scan reports are sufficient for an urgency assessment. You can fax or email this information to: fax 02 9747 6630 / email: sydneyspineinstitute@gmail.com

Alternatively, your GP can ring us directly on 02 9715 5007 (option 1) to request an urgent appointment.

I’m not sure who the right specialist is for my spine problem.

If you have a family doctor that you see regularly, you can discuss your problem with your doctor who should be able to recommend the right specialist for you. Usually, a GP who is familiar with your history and symptoms would be the best person to make this decision.

If you don’t have easy access to a family doctor, you can see the general spine doctor for a General Spinal Assessment. The general spine doctor will assess your condition and direct you to the right specialist for further treatment, if needed.

What is Telehealth?

Telehealth is the provision of healthcare services via telecommunication technology, most commonly, video-conferencing technology. Telehealth aims to provide access to healthcare services for people who live in regional, rural and remote areas.

Is it appropriate for a patient to have a neurosurgical consultation via video link?

In most cases, yes.

  • In most cases, an examination of radiology images and a discussion of symptoms with the patient are sufficient for the surgeon to provide a diagnosis
  • The patient can avoid unnecessary travel expenses and inconvenience unless surgical treatment is really warranted
  • 95% of the patients we see do not need an operation – surgery is always a last resort option
  • In most cases, spinal problems are managed conservatively