The Hopedale Story
By Alexander Germanis
By Alexander Germanis
As spring turns to summer, the cities and countryside finalize their transitions from the dull palette of winter to the healthy hues of rebirth. The most noticeable representatives of this transition are the trees, standing straight and strong, proving their resilience by making it through another winter and entering another season of growth. An equal symbol of resilience and strength is Hopedale Medical Complex in Hopedale, Illinois. For nearly seven decades, this hospital has served the citizens of Hopedale and the surrounding communities. And like a lone oak in a vast field, Hopedale Hospital has remained independent from the large medical conglomerates and still proudly operates as a not-for-profit healthcare center. Yet Hopedale still employs the best medical professionals and provides the latest in medical techniques and equipment, assuring its patients also see continued years of health and growth.
In 1955, Dr. Lawrence Rossi, Sr., with generous support from the community and the surrounding farms, founded Hopedale Hospital—what is now the greater Hopedale Medical Complex. Soon approaching its 70th anniversary, Hopedale Hospital continues to function due to the continued support and loyalty of its neighbors and all without government assistance. Today, those at Hopedale Hospital strive to maintain the same caring attitude and personable bedside manner Dr. Rossi established during his time there. Healing others has become the Rossi family legacy. Dr. Lawrence’s son and grandsons carry on today in what has essentially become the family business. That isn’t to say spine and neurosurgeon Dr. Nicholas Rossi did not have a professional sojourn away from Central Illinois, however. After earning his bachelor’s degree at Illinois Wesleyan in Bloomington, he earned his medical doctorate at Indiana University. With a neurological surgical residency at the University of Tennessee/Semmes Murphey Clinic and a complex spinal surgery fellowship in Bristol, England, he began his career in earnest. “I finished my surgery training six years ago and initially took a job at a major referral hospital in Dallas, Texas,” Dr. Rossi recalls. “My wife and I were there for two years before we realized that we needed to be closer to our families. My father is a surgeon at Hopedale and continues to practice there today. My brother also recently returned to work at Hopedale. The ability to work alongside my family was too special to pass up.” Now the doctor carries on in true Rossi and Hopedale Hospital fashion, especially when it comes to spinal and neurological care. “Providing truly patient-focused care is what sets us apart,” he states. With directly accessible doctors, patients are not treated as just a number at Hopedale, Dr. Rossi insists. “At your appointment you meet with me. And being a small facility means that our nurses and team will know your name.” Everything, from the size of Hopedale Hospital to it’s a relaxing environment and its surroundings of beautiful views are all meant to comfort you when you’re in pain and to enhance a swift recovery.
Neurosurgery Without Surgery?
Neurosurgery is often associated with procedures on the brain, and while brain surgery is certainly included under that specialty, Dr. Rossi focuses on the neck and back. “My approach at Hopedale is to provide care for a patient’s spine pain from the beginning to the end,” he assures. “Your pain is unique, and at your first visit we will have a conversation regarding the specifics of your pain and how it is interfering with your life.” But that doesn’t necessarily mean Dr. Rossi will be prepping the surgical suite for your next appointment. Hopedale Neuro and Spine provides a full spectrum of care in order to make surgery the last choice solution to your pain. By reviewing X-rays and MRI images, the doctor will pinpoint the exact cause of your pain and review all your options with you. “Most patients who visit my clinic never end up requiring surgery,” Dr. Rossi declares. There are nonsurgical options that can help. Many times, we are able to find a medication that has not yet been tried and that can provide dramatic relief.” Targeted physical therapy with the aid of wonderful therapists and a specialized therapy pool can be another option to surgery. If there’s a therapist closer to you who you would find it easier to work with, Hopedale Neuro and Spine can collaborate with them as well. Nerve blocks or nerve ablations are yet other alternatives to surgery. Both are effective ways to alleviate pain felt in the back or the knee. “These can help us narrow down your pain source,” the doctor says, “and they also provide dramatic, instant, and long-term relief.”
When All Else Fails
If more conservative treatments fail to ameliorate your pain, and surgery becomes necessary, Hopedale Hospital is the place for it. Operating in state-of-the-art operating suites and utilizing the latest in surgical technology, Dr. Rossi, his colleagues, and their predecessors have successfully performed countless procedures over the decades. Daily, Hopedale Hospital surgeons perform neurological, orthopedic, vascular, and urological surgeries, just to name a few. Dr. Rossi is an expert in the latest, cutting edge, minimally invasive surgical techniques. With much smaller incisions than traditional surgery—typically less than an inch in length—minimally invasive procedures are beneficial for the patient for myriad reasons. Less damage is done to the muscles in the back, blood loss is significantly reduced during surgery, as is the amount of time spent in recovery both at the hospital and at home. “Spine surgery has come a very long way in recent years,” Dr. Rossi states. “The majority of my surgery patients go home the same day as their surgery.” Ultimately, pain should not be a part of your life. It is a fallacy that pain is a ‘normal’ part of aging, says Dr. Rossi. “It is your body’s way of telling you that something is not right. Pain should not interfere with your ability to do things you enjoy in life. Many of my patients are in pain that prevents them from working, spending time with their family, going on trips, or even just going for a walk. If you look honestly at your life and realize you are avoiding or no longer doing activities that you enjoy due to pain, then it is time to have a conversation with a specialist.”
A Mission of Strength
For three generations, Hopedale Hospital has provided patient care for Central Illinois and continues to do so in the warm, caring, old-fashioned way many people think has all but disappeared. Whether you need physical therapy or complex surgery, the doctors of Hopedale Hospital will work with you to find the optimal solution and get you back to living your life, pain free. For nearly 70 years Hopedale Hospital has stood strong, making it their mission to help all who enter their doors to stand strong once again as well.
Yasser Hussein, MD
Interventional Pain Management
I am focused on the individual patient and how I can help them to reduce the amount of pain and discomfort they may be experiencing. Every single patient has their own unique set of circumstances that we need to take the time to assess.
- Board Certification – American Board of Anesthesiology
- Spine Intervention Society – Active member
- Full Illinois Medical License