TriStar StoneCrest January 19, 2015

SMYRNA, Tenn. (Jan. 19, 2015) – Juris Shibayama, M.D., orthopaedic spine surgeon and Chief of Staff at TriStar StoneCrest Medical Center, became the first surgeon to perform a total disc arthroplasty in Rutherford County, Tennessee, during a procedure here Nov. 26, 2014.

Having this spinal surgery option available in a community-based hospital is exciting for TriStar StoneCrest, Rutherford County and Dr. Shibayama.

“The reason I went into spine surgery is because I saw how the field was evolving. I saw that we were at a point where major advancements were going to be made,” he said. “I am so blessed and grateful to have this opportunity to be one of the pioneers in spinal surgery in Tennessee."

The minimally-invasive disc replacement technique uses an implant that goes into the disc space after it is removed, allowing the bones around it to continue to move normally. Traditionally, surgeons would do an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF), in which the disc is removed and the bones are welded together so that they do not move anymore.

Dr. Shibayama performed his first disc replacements while in fellowship at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago eight years ago. He saw positive short-term outcomes from those early procedures. He then continued monitoring more patient outcome data as it became available before making this spinal surgery option available to eligible candidates in his private practice.

With a decade of data now available and showing positive short and long-term outcomes for patients who have a total disc replacement, Dr. Shibayama is discussing this option with strong candidates for the surgery.

"The data we have on cervical disc replacement now shows that the patients who have this procedure have as good if not better results at 10 years compared to those that have the traditional operation for this condition which is an ACDF," said Dr. Shibayama. "The added benefit of this procedure is that it preserves motion at the operated segment. This decreases stress on the levels next to it, and lowers the chance that those other levels will become degenerated and worn out down the road. This leads to a lowered risk for future problems of the other discs, and much less chance that she will need another surgery later on."

Patients also have a much shorter period of limited activity with this minimally invasive spinal surgery technique, getting them back to their normal routines more quickly.

Bringing new services and capabilities like this total disc replacement surgery to the community supports the hospital’s mission of being committed to the care and improvement of human life.

“Over the years we have developed a strong spine program at TriStar StoneCrest to meet the growing community need for surgical spine services,” said Louis Caputo, CEO of TriStar StoneCrest Medical Center. “We are fortunate to work with dedicated physicians like Dr. Juris Shibayama to continue expanding the scope of services available to our patients.”

The TriStar StoneCrest spine surgery program consists of surgery-specific patient education, designated pre- and post-operative care plans and physical therapy. Fellowship trained spine surgeons have dedicated operating room spinal teams and dedicated operating rooms specifically for spinal surgery.

TriStar StoneCrest was designated as a Blue Distinction® Center for Spine Surgery by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee in 2013. Learn more about the spine surgery program at


Celebrating 11 years of serving the community, TriStar StoneCrest Medical Center is a 109-bed facility located in North Rutherford County, Tenn. The TriStar Health hospital offers a full array of acute care services, including emergency care, general surgery, cardiology, obstetrics, intensive care, physical medicine, outpatient diagnostic services and cancer care. Recognized by The Joint Commission as a Top Performer on Key Quality Measures® for three consecutive years, TriStar StoneCrest is a national leader in providing quality healthcare. For more information about the services offered and health plans accepted by TriStar StoneCrest Medical, call TriStar MedLine® at 615-342-1919 or visit and choose TriStar StoneCrest Medical Center. The hospital is located at 200 StoneCrest Boulevard, Smyrna, Tenn.