Patient quote

"The commitment and passion of the staff to give a first rate service is unbelievable". Mr RB

Send us your comments

Jargon buster


Abnormal curvature of the spine to one side. The chest area (thoracic scoliosis) and lower back (lumbar scoliosis) are the most common areas to be affected. Find out more about this condition at NHS Choices.

View the full jargon buster

Musculoskeletal Services

Specialist Spinal Surgery

Contact: (0191) 213 7885 - Directorate Manager

Seven out of ten of us will suffer from some sort of back pain or spinal problem at some stage in our life. It can be due to a number of reasons, ranging from fractures and infection to degenerative disc disease, curvature of the spine (scoliosis) and spinal tumours, and often leads to reduced movement.

Our Musculoskeletal Unit in the Northern Centre for Orthopaedics offers a specialist service for the diagnosis and pain management of spinal problems in both children and adults. We’re one of very few units in the country with a dedicated service for children, with specially trained clinical staff, advanced paediatric facilities and a paediatric intensive care unit. We are also one of the busiest centres in the UK for the advanced treatment of certain complex spinal deformities, such as scoliosis.

Specialist spinal care with a personal touch

Led by our five spinal surgeons, our team aims to treat your back pain as effectively as possible, whether through surgery or pain relief, providing spinal stability and improved movement and enabling you to get back to normal life as quickly as possible. For emergency cases, specialist scanning equipment and operating theatres are available 24 hours a day.

Spinal surgery, delivered at both the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) and the Freeman Hospital, is used to treat a range of conditions, such as cervical and lumbar disc disease, fractures and infections of the spine, and spinal tumours. Wherever possible we use advanced, minimally invasive surgical techniques to minimise your discomfort and hasten your recovery.

Surgery isn’t always necessary or appropriate, however, and we also provide a number of non-surgical treatments, such as pain and inflammation relief, moist heat therapy, exercise and physiotherapy.


We are now using an online referral system ensuring speed of access and accurate information transfer and recording of all specialist referrals. This new referral system can be found at:

Several training documents have been created to support account registration, referral creation and tracking of progress.

Please note that if there is an imminent threat to life or an urgent clinical concern that cannot wait, referrals will still be accepted via the traditional telephone route.

© Copyright Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 2020 Site by TH_NK