Steven Cramer

Birmingham, AL

Conditions + Treatments

Medical Icon Spine Injury/Condition

I grew up in Birmingham, AL and a lot of my extended family live in Pittsburgh, PA. I am grateful that I came from a hard-working family and that wrestling was a sport that was taught and participated in by many generations of my family.   

I was born with Scheuermann's kyphosis, a condition impacting spinal curvature, I was pretty active throughout my childhood up to finishing college. However, during a vacation shortly after my wedding, my world shifted when I felt excruciating pain in my back. I was in New Hampshire with my wife when I felt a pain in my back that was debilitating. I went to a nearby doctor to get an injection to hopefully ease the pain, but it never really helped.

Back in Birmingham, my condition deteriorated further, and paralysis fully set in. My wife rushed to call the paramedics, and when I arrived at the ER, I wasn’t admitted until about 8 hours later. Amidst skepticism and neglect from other medical professionals, Dr. Daniel C. Kim stood out as a beacon of hope. Recognizing the urgency of the situation, Dr. Kim quickly diagnosed an abscess on my spine linked to the kyphosis. 

An immediate surgical intervention by Dr. Kim saved me from the brink of permanent paralysis. It was around midnight when Dr. Kim performed the surgery, and if I had waited any longer, I may have not had the chance to recover. Reflecting on that critical moment, I realized that without Dr. Kim's swift action, walking again would have been an impossibility.

Following the surgery, Dr. Kim was able to refer me to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, GA. My journey there was a testament to my relentless spirit. With six hours of intensive daily physical therapy, I was determined to defy every obstacle in my path. Nerve pain and tremors were mere challenges to overcome on my way to my ultimate goal: walking unassisted through those doors.

The culmination of my determination, the expert care from Dr. Kim, and the support of my wife, who stood by my side, I defied the odds. Six months after my surgery, I beat paralysis, stepped back into the world on my own two feet, and embarked on a remarkable journey of recovery.

Today, I am back to embracing the activities I love. I’ve since returned to work, lifting weights, and I average nearly four miles of walking each day. Reflecting on my experience, I can’t thank Dr. Kim enough for his expertise and dedication because, without him, my comeback would have been impossible.

My journey stands as a testament to the human spirit's power to overcome adversity. From the depths of paralysis, I rose with unwavering determination, proving that with the right medical team and unyielding perseverance, there are no limits to what can be achieved. I am hopeful my story resonates as an inspiring testament to never giving up, and a powerful reminder that even the most daunting challenges can be conquered through resilience and hope.

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Dr. Daniel Kim
Daniel C. Kim, MD View Bio