Diagnosis: Chronic back pain
Treatment: Pain injections
Kenny Alhadeff knows about life in the spotlight.
The Tony-Award-winning philanthropist, social-justice activist and seventh-generation Seattleite has built a life-long career on advocating for others on stages both large and small.
His life has been illuminated with rewarding opportunities to care for his community, but a decade of severe, chronic back pain threatened to dim the luster that surrounded the 66-year-old’s positive outlook.
“Living with pain changes you; it changes your spirit and your attitude,” Alhadeff said, reflecting on his diagnosis. “If you’re lucky, you do not succumb to it destroying your spirit, but it diminishes your capacity for grace and light and joy. I was in that dark place.”
Alhadeff had spent the better part of his 50s living in pain.
At times, it was so severe that the avid golfer had difficulty moving or even standing. With over 30 years of sobriety, pain medication of any kind was not an option for masking Alhadeff’s extreme discomfort.
Though he had consulted with dozens of specialists and pursued the gamut of possible treatments, the true turning point happened when Alhadeff faced the prospect of losing golf as his physical, emotional and even spiritual release.
Luckily, a referral to EvergreenHealth came at just the right time.
Long conversations between Alhadeff and the medical team, followed by rigorous diagnostic testing, collaborative reviews of MRIs and discussions of Alhadeff’s other complementary treatments led them to agree that Alhadeff was a good candidate for interventional pain management injections.
“I believe that great physicians understand that their ability to help heal is based on knowing the patient,” Alhadeff shared. “The entire team at EvergreenHealth know that and their compassion is reflected in their patient-centered approach.”
After his first injection, Alhadeff felt a subtle improvement. Follow-up treatments gradually led to more relief until eventually, he could confidently say he was living life pain free.
“I know my case is rare, but I truly believe that anyone with severe pain can benefit from EvergreenHealth’s holistic approach to healing, Alhadeff said. "They thoughtfully pursue every possible treatment path and you can feel their humanity, humor and grace as they do."
“They bring you from a point of desperation to a point of hope. They give you a realistic ray of hope,” he said.