Looking for Dr in Toronto / Ontario?

Hi Danni, I don’t have info at this point but I’m a Toronto resident as well. I don’t know if it’s Eagle’s that I have (just now starting my diagnostic process) but I will keep you in the loop if you’d like to connect privately.
Wishing you a good day!

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I am from Alberta and I am still waiting for an appt date with the ENT that I was referred to… perhaps I’ll be lucky and he will have heard of this or had experience!!!

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Any Canadians have any luck finding a doctor for ES? Just wasted 9months with Dr Vescan at Mt Sinai in Toronto. Who said I have ES but he won’t treat it. it’s not causing these issuers for u. i asked how long the stylods are? He said that was not note on the 3D CTCaan i’ve noted ES symptoms gor 20 yrs. Vasculaur kind. Today’s a bad day - neuralgia in ear, jaw, occipital region. tinnitus is very loud and brain fog. soooo tired and now incredibly discouraged. any one? pls

i’m would like see dr samji ( he’s from my home town ) does anyone know how i go about getting an about

also Jules I have AS / Anklosing Spondilitis
(30 yrs) and noted you have some members w AS on here? i find that correlation very interesting! As Spondyloarthropathies cause arthritis at the points where your bones connect to soft tissues like ligaments … ES???
and tendons connect to bones and muscles.

Is there ever a way you could take a poll? As AS, Crohns, psoriasis, reactive artworks are in the Spondyloarthropathy family. I know a simple blood test was a big marker for AS, it’s HLB27.

thank you for any help you could in helping me getting to Dr. Samji✌🏽

Danielle in Toronto

Dr Samji’s details are in the latest doctors list: Latest Doctors List 2017
Here’s some info about what scans Dr Samji needs: CT neck non-contrast “styloid protocol”?
You could start another discussions to ask about the ankylosing spondylitis, see if any other members respond? Or use the search facility to look through past discussions- just use the magnifying glass icon, top right of the page. We’ve had members with other connective tissue disorders like Ehlers Danlos syndrome.
It’s hard when you have vascular symptoms, been there! It can take a while to get anywhere with doctors- & even experienced ones aren’t always aware of some symptoms we get! But hang in there & try to keep strong; if you think you’d be able to get to Dr Samji then that’s great, he does phone consults, so you wouldn’t have to keep travelling to see him. Lots of members have stayed nearby after their ops, if you are able to get to see him Isaiah40:31 can give you suggestions.

Grrrrr…makes me so angry when the doctor tells one of us that ES can’t be causing our symptoms!!! I’m so sorry you are having to deal with this and suffering through long periods of time between doc appts. I too have been suffering with this evil for more than 20 years! I know it is exhausting, but hang in there…we haven’t suffered this long for nothing. I’m afraid it’s a long hard road even after diagnosis as you have already started to experience. I’ve been to see 2 potential surgeons and wouldn’t dream of letting either of them touch me. I have had more surgeries that one person should for various things and I am not interested in going to the wrong doc to have this done and then have to do it over. I am just going straight on to the expert as soon as I can get it arranged or accepted by Dr. Samji. Don’t know what will happen if he doesn’t but I’m trying not to think of it. Your symptoms sound much like mine and when I started having vascular symptoms over the last couple of years, I started to get more aggressive about finding out what has been plaguing me for most of my life. Finally I was diagnosed in April of this year by the same ENT I have been seeing for more than 10 years.
Just keep working at it and moving forward…one foot in front of the other! Keep the faith and know help is out there! :slight_smile:

Hi Danni -

Dr.Cognetti is closer to you (Philadelphia, PA) since you’re in Toronto. He is also an excellent surgeon. His surgical philosophy is a bit different than Dr. Samji’s, but his patients get pretty consistently good results from the ES surgeries he performs.


Hi Danni, yes I have been diagnosed with AS but don’t have fusion.

Hi Danni,

I had a partial intra oral styloidectomy by Dr. Gupta ENT at St. Joes in Hamilton Ontario. He actually had done another one the day I had mine done! Just as a side note - he only does it is intra orally unless he gets in there and needs to go externally.

Hi I’m sorry you went threw this. I was recently diagnosed and am looking for a Dr in toronto. Did you have any luck finding one?

Hi Tara,
There’s a discussion you can search for ‘Questions for Canadians’, where a Dr Vescan , Mount Sinai, Toronto is mentioned. Don’t know if that’ll be any help, Canadian doctors are few & far between.

Thank you so much. I’ll look into it. So frustrating. I appreciate your help

This discussion mentions that Dr at the beginning but she said she had no luck with him.

Oops, sorry!

Are you willing to travel for surgery? Maybe OHIP will cover out of province surgeries? I know here in Newfoundland, our MCP will cover out if province surgeries…sometimes out of country. We have an amazing surgeon here in St. John’s Newfoundland. Short wait times. I had a pano at my dentist in July…they saw it and sent it to my family doc who had no clue what ES was, so he and I did our research and came across this site and Dr Lee’s name. So my family doc sent my pano and referral off to Dr Lee in August. I saw him October 10th, surgery is Oct 30th, he is doing both sides the same time intraorally and can and will get right from skull base . Worth checking into if you can’t find a doc close :). GOODLUCK


TaraWest -

Here’s a link to the Doctors’ List. Hopefully the info there will be helpful for you:


Thank u. I seen an ENT today so we will see what happens. I have to go for another MRI on my neck

Tara, great news (well, maybe the start of good news, anyway). Can you please be sure that you mention the name of the doctor here if things work out well? As you know, Canadian doctors who do ES surgery are rare.


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Hi Tara,

A CT scan is waaaay better for diagnosing ES unless they’re looking for something else as well. You may want to talk to your doctor about that before going in for the MRI. Glad you’ve found a doctor who’s willing to work with you. That is AWESOME!!

So sorry that you’re getting such difficult symptoms, but very pleased that your doctors are taking you seriously & are wanting to help.
If you haven’t looked already, there is info in the Newbies Guide- common symptoms & what might be causing them, as lots of your symptoms could be down to ES.
As for surgery, unfortunately no-one can say whether surgery will cure them all, it’s a personal decision as to whether the symptoms & their effect on your quality of life outweigh the risks of surgery. But leaving the calcified ligaments in could cause more damage to nerves & worse symptoms…It’s perhaps a good idea to send your scans to one of the doctors; maybe sending to just one would give you an expert opinion but save the cost of 2 consults? I believe Dr Samji does more ES surgeries than Dr Cognetti, so might be a good bet?
If your doctor is a skull base surgeon then he should be used to operating in the area of the styloids, if you do opt for surgery. Although your styloids are not hugely elongated, they are still a bit longer than usual, so would be a good idea if you can get them removed or shortened as well as the calcified ligaments removed.
Best wishes, thinking of you as you make this decision, & let us know how you get on with the phone consult.

Hi Annieloo,

I agree w/ Jules. Your symptoms are all seen w/ ES so you’re case is not unusual from that standpoint. As far as your masseter muscle & numb teeth go, the facial & trigeminal nerves are often compromised & irritated due to ligament calcification or styloid elongation. Those are the nerves that would affect that part of your face. As far as your other symptoms go, there are other cranial nerves that are obviously being irritated as well & thus creating the variety of symptoms you have. You may even have a bit of vascular compression which causes the intermittent dizziness. Irritated cranial nerves cause crazy & diverse symptoms including horrific pain, numbness, burning, pressure, etc. ES can cause lymph nodes & muscles to swell depending on which nerves are irritated & how the body is recruiting “help” to try to alleviate the problems caused by the dysfunctioning nerves.

Calcified stylohyoid ligaments tether the hyoid bone so it can’t move when you speak, cough, swallow, laugh, sneeze, breathe, etc. When the hyoid can’t move then other muslces, tendons & ligaments must come into play & do jobs they weren’t intended to do which causes pain, pressure & swelling in unexpected places. The only way to stop this cascade of symptoms & pain is to get rid of the cause. As Jules noted, leaving them in place allows further calcification which will only create worse & potentially longer lasting problems or permanent nerve damage.

Both Dr. Samji & Dr. Cognetti do bilateral ES surgery as two surgeries. There is much swelling in the throat post op & for safety reasons, they both feel two surgeries are better than one. It sounds like the surgeon you’re seeing is very compassionate & wise. I admire his humility in recommending you get a second opinion or two rather than insisting he should just do your surgeries. No surgeon will guarantee that surgery will totally remove your symptoms & pain, but from the results we’ve seen on this forum, most people have a significant reduction in symptoms & pain after having surgery. If your surgeon is a very experienced skull based surgeon, he should be able to do a successful ES surgery for you, however, I also understand your trepidation in being his “first”. I’ll include the link to the Doctors’ List below so you can see other doctors in your province & further east who have done ES surgeries. You can look each one up using the magnifying glass icon above right to see what posts have been made that mention them by name.

I hope tomorrow is a good day for you as we begin a new decade. Never stop hoping for improvement. You’re on the right path!



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