Llen Ryan has been the rock of her family’s household for more than 50 years, from raising children alongside her husband Frank and watching her grandchildren grow up.
When she started feeling constant back pain six years ago, she knew she wouldn’t give up her independence and exercise routine without a fight. The thought of stopping her daily walks around Kennesaw Mountain bothered her as much as the physical pain itself.
“I couldn’t walk. I was on the couch for a long time, months, because that would help ease the pain somewhat,” Llen said, expressing her frustration with the debilitating back pain. “I couldn’t stand using a cane or a walker anymore.”
That’s when she met Dr. Franklin Lin, a board-certified neurosurgeon and spine surgeon who helped her take the first steps toward better health.
“When I first met Llen, her chronic back pain had begun interfering with her everyday life. She was starting to have difficulty doing the activities she enjoyed,” Dr. Lin recalled.
“After evaluating her condition, it became clear she was suffering from spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the spaces between the spine,” Dr. Lin said, explaining how the condition can be caused by wear and tear over time. “Patients with spinal stenosis can often feel tingling, numbness and a ‘pinching’ sensation in the spine, which can be very painful.”