Back in Action
With a “revolutionary” procedure called Discseel®, Dr. Ron Lieberman takes a minimally invasive approach to helping patients find relief from the debilitating effects of chronic back pain.
by Bill Donahue

Chronic back pain can disrupt or even derail a person’s life. Those affected often find themselves unable to pursue hobbies they once enjoyed, incapable of spending quality time with their family, and overcome by feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and isolation.  

Ron Lieberman, D.O., would know. As a board-certified physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist, Dr. Lieberman has spent the past 25 years helping patients move forward after back pain forced them to put their lives on hold.

“For some people, the pain is so bad that they can’t even sit down to read a book,” says Dr. Lieberman, founder and medical director of Tristate Physical Medicine Associates, which has local offices in Bala Cynwyd and Wilmington, with another coming soon to King of Prussia. “Other than surgery, which many people don’t want to do because of the risks involved, a lot of these people feel like they have no option for getting better.”
Dr. Lieberman is happy to say there is an option, and it’s called Discseel®. This minimally invasive, outpatient procedure uses a natural injectable biologic called fibrin to promote the healing of damaged discs. The carefully guided injections of fibrin create a barrier that prevents the leakage of disc fluid containing inflammatory chemicals, which can aggravate the surrounding nerves inside the disc covering known as the annulus fibrosis and, in turn, cause back pain. Fibrin also helps to promote the growth of new, healthy disc tissue.
“With fusion surgery, the adjacent discs that aren’t fused are subject to more stress than they were designed to handle; thus, the risks of promoting spine degeneration are guaranteed,” Dr. Lieberman says. “As in fusion, where encouragement of spine degeneration is a matter of when, not if, a discectomy worsens the annular tear that actually led to it by altering its structural integrity even further, which again promotes the gradual deterioration of that treated disc. There is no surgical procedure that can sew up a torn annulus fibrosis. In contrast, Discseel is a regenerative procedure, and so far we’ve seen no evidence of complications. No other procedure—platelet-rich plasma, stem cells, etc.—has reproduced the same kind of results.”
Discseel begins with obtaining a detailed history of the patient’s back pain, and reviewing previous tests and procedures the patient may have undergone, as well as a physical examination and MRI review. By doing so, Dr. Lieberman can determine if the patient is a good candidate and answer any questions about the procedure. Next, an annulogram is performed while the patient is under sedation, and contrast dye is injected into the annulus fibrosis to identity any small tears that may have been missed by an MRI. After the tears are identified, Dr. Lieberman injects fibrin into the damaged discs under the guidance of an X-ray camera. Once the procedure is completed, the patient will take a 30-minute rest and then walk with assistance.   
“People will have to take it easy the first day, but they’re encouraged to walk 10 percent more each day thereafter,” Dr. Lieberman says. “Everyone varies, though patients typically see relief in four to five months.”
Since 2004, more than 7,000 patients have had the Discseel procedure performed. As many as 70 percent have reported a significant reduction in their chronic back pain and an improvement in quality of life.
“The impact can be extraordinary,” Dr. Lieberman adds. “They’re typically able to be more functional overall at work, at home, or with their outdoor activities of interest again. They can play golf, ride a bike, hike, or pursue what the enjoy, and they’re able to live their lives with significantly less back pain.”
Since graduating from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Dr. Lieberman has continued to expand his knowledge base and educate others. His pursuit of knowledge is what first led him to the science behind Discseel more than 20 years ago. He has since become one of only 25 physicians across the country licensed to perform the procedure. In fact, he has taken steps to earn the status of Discseel Master Provider and Instructor. He is the only provider in the tristate area that, as an Interventional Spine Specialist, has been teaching faculty for the prestigious North American Spine Society.
“Discseel is a revolutionary procedure and an optimal option for people with chronic low-back pain who prefer to avoid surgery or additional surgery,” he adds. “It’s a commonsense procedure that has been scientifically validated, and there’s no other procedure under the sun that can heal the disc using the same criteria, functionally and physiologically. I’m honored and privileged to be able to offer Discseel to my patients because of the proven functional and physiologic results it can provide.”
Ron Lieberman, D.O.
Tristate Physical Medicine Associates | (610) 924-2322
333 E. City Ave.
2 Bala Plaza, Suite IL-9
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
2501 Silverside Road
Wilmington, DE 19810
1905 Clint Moore Road, Suite 300
Boca Raton, FL 33496
Coming soon to King of Prussia
Photo by Alison Dunlap
Published (and copyrighted) in Suburban Life magazine, March 2023.