Complex Spine

Complex Spine

Complex Spines at the Manchester Centre for Clinical Neurosciences (MCCN) is provided by 21 Consultant Neurosurgeons and 12 Consultant Spinal Surgeons.

Between this group of 33 Consultant Surgeons, augmented by 4 Staff Grade Neurosurgeons, the MCCN provides the full range of both elective (planned) and emergency spinal surgery.

To provide high level care, the Complex Spinal Department works closely with the wider team in a variety of settings.

The urgent assessment and management of emergency presentations can be completed locally at Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust and remotely at other trusts within Greater Manchester via our online referral platform.

This newly emerging technology allows two-way communication with other medical professionals to allow timely assessment, investigations and management plans to be discussed without the patient having to be transferred to Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust.

Complex spinal surgery includes both elective and urgent management of a range of spinal conditions, from fractures, spinal cord injury and degenerative changes. We work closely with our colleagues in the Pain Centre and Neurorehabilitation Services to ensure a seamless transition from one service to another.

A number of our consultants also work between adult services at Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust and paediatric services at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, allowing uninterrupted transition of care. 
To ensure practice is of the highest quality, efficacy and safety, objective measures are used to monitor our outcomes. These include CQC monitoring and the use of outcome tools, such as Spine Tango.

Audit and research is regularly undertaken by the Complex Spinal Team. Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust is a teaching hospital for the University of Manchester Medical School and the spinal department plays a key role in the education of medical students and post-graduate doctors.


Treatments associated with Complex Spine


Single Level Spinal Instrumentation Surgery   Multiple Level Spinal Instrumentation Surgery   Cervical Spine Surgery   Lumbar Spine Surgery
Back Pain   Adolescent Scoliosis   Orthotics    


Meet the Team


The Complex Spinal Team currently has 13 consultants with a range of specialties, including scoliosis correction, spinal tumours, spinal trauma and degenerative spinal conditions. We also work closely with other medical consultants in related areas including neurosurgery, major trauma, pain management and neurorehabilitation. Further information about our consultants can be found here.


The Wider Team

The wider medical team includes specialist registrars, consultant physiotherapists and junior doctors.

The Complex Spinal Team also has three Advanced Clinical Practitioners who provide care in a variety of inpatient and outpatient settings.

Alongside the nursing staff on the wards, the Complex Spinal Team includes a number of specialist spinal nurses. These experienced nurses have advanced skills in the wide range of spinal presentations, including halo management, bladder and bowel management following spinal cord injury, and pre- and post-operative care in our Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) programme. 

The therapy team includes a wide range of health professionals. Physiotherapists and Occuapational Therapists have key roles in the Complex Spinal Team, as well as support from Speech and Language Therapists, dieticians and social workers. A large physiotherapy team is able to provide rehabilitation and advice to patients before and after spinal surgery or spinal injury, with crucial networks to therapy teams in the community to continue rehabilitation after discharge from hospital. Occupational therapy is critical in providing equipment and aids to optimise function and safety both on the ward and discharge home.

The orthotics department have strong links with the Complex Spinal Team. The use of collars and spinal orthotic braces are commonly used in the management of fractures and other spinal conditions.

Ongoing inpatient rehabilitation is a crucial part of recovery for some patients. We have close relationships with neurorehabilitation departments in Salford, Greater Manchester and further afield. The North West Regional Spinal Injuries Centre, based in Southport, is the closest of eight specialist spinal rehabilitation centres in England. Members of the team from Southport and rehabilitation consultants from Salford’s neurorehabilitation department meet regularly, completing weekly in-reach to patients requiring their services.