Testimonials & Reviews

The Sternberg Clinic

Jeffrey A. Sternberg, MD, FACS, FASCRS

Pilonidal Surgery & Board-Certified Colorectal Surgeon located in Civic Center, Hayes Valley, San Francisco, CA

42 total reviews

Dr. Jeffrey A. Sternberg always appreciates feedback from his valued patients. To date, we’re thrilled to have collected 42 reviews with an average rating of 5 out of 5 stars. Please read what others are saying about Dr. Jeffrey Sternberg below, and as always, we would love to collect your feedback.

NancyAnn W.
Submitted 08/30/19
Dr Sternberg quite literally saved my son. Suffering from a pilonidal cyst, my son had surgery. It failed, and for a year he was trying to function like a normal teen, but in massive pain, and with an incision that wouldn’t heal (it was open, and drained constantly). I found Dr Sternberg on the internet, and he immediately assured us he could fix it, and my son would go on healed. Needless to say, he did -fix the mess left behind, and cure the issue- and we are forever in his debt. I recommend to anyone diagnosed with this to go to him first! Don’t let another surgeon touch you or your child!
Rebecca Z.
Submitted 08/07/19
As I sit here writing about our experience with Doctor Sternberg, I truly hope that I am able to do him justice and convey clearly to everyone what an amazing physician, surgeon, and human being he is. While on vacation in San Francisco for New Year 2019, my 16 year old son complained of a cyst like bump on his tailbone and a strange drainage coming from below the cyst. My "mom brain" went into immediate worry-mode and I frantically did a google search that produced the the diagnosis of pilonidal cyst. I freaked out even more reading about the horror stories associated with the treatment. Well, the stars must have been aligned that day because I then proceeded to do a search for a doctor who specializes in pilonidal disease and since we were in San Francisco, Dr. Sternberg's website popped right up. I called immediately, but due to the holidays, the answering service picked up. I nervously explained what was going on, not expecting to hear back from anyone until the next week as they had told me that the doctor was away for the New Year. To my surprise, within 10 minutes, Dr. Sternberg himself called me back. He was so reassuring and I immediately felt at ease. He explained to me that I needed to take photos of my son and precisely how to do it (also explained on his website) so that I could send them directly to him for the confirmation of the condition. Since we were leaving San Francisco to head back to Dubai (where we live) in a couple of days time, this was an absolute life saver as we would be leaving before the office opened back up for appointments. I took the pictures, sent them and the diagnosis was confirmed. Through speaking with Dr. Sternberg, utilizing the abundance of information on his website and doing an exhaustive external online search, we were able to comfortably make an informed decision about his treatment. There was absolutely no guess work involved in having Dr. Sternberg perform the cleft-lift procedure and we travelled 16 hours by plane to do so! After reading about Dr. Sternberg's expertise with this condition and the cleft-lift procedure, I would not have dreamed of having anyone else do this surgery. Both the doctor and his staff made the whole process easy. The consult was set up for the first day, surgery the next and check up on the third. My son's pilonidal disease was very advanced and had gone undetected for quite some time, making his an extremely difficult case. I was so worried. But again, Dr. Sternberg was an absolute hero throughout the entire process. After coming out of surgery, the doctor explained that even though his condition was much more extensive than was apparent outwardly, he was confident that he would heal well. Dr. Sternberg actually called and texted me frequently during the recovery process to check on my son, often before I even had the chance to call him! On the occasions that I did call or message him (and there were plenty of times that I did) he always answered quickly and never made me feel like I was bothering him. My son is doing so well now and we are so incredibly grateful to have found Dr. Sternberg. I try not to think of what might have happened had we not. Thank you a thousand times over, Doc!
Julie H.
Submitted 07/25/19
My son, Drew, who is 19 years old, had surgery with Dr. Sternberg on the 17th of July 2019. This was Drew's third surgery. In October of 2018, Drew was away at school at the University of San Francisco, playing baseball. This was a lifelong dream - to go to college and play Division 1 baseball. Unfortunately, he needed to have surgery for a pilonidal cyst. The surgery failed and Drew had to leave school and move back home. In March of 2019, he had still not healed and required a second surgery. A Bascolm Cleft Lift was supposedly performed by a surgeon in our hometown. This was supposed to cure him. This too failed and he started wound care in May of 2019. We were devistated. Finally it became clear that Drew needed to see Dr. Sternberg. Drew had been recommended to him in the very beginning but our insurance would not cover the surgery as Dr. Sternberg was out of network. We were finally able to get our primary doctor to make a referral for a consultation. We were so excited and hopeful. After meeting with Dr. Sternberg we had decided that Drew would have the surgery even if we had to pay for it out of pocket. We felt that strongly that he could help Drew. Our insurance actually approved the surgery - after a fight! We are a full week post surgery and this experience has been amazing. Dr. Sternberg is amazing. If you or a loved one are in this situation, do not let anyone but him operate on you or them. Drew feels like he has his life back. That he will get the opportunity to play college baseball again. This is all because of Dr. Sternberg. The Presidio Surgery Center and Dr. Sternberg's staff are all amazing and helpful. This has been the best experience and we are so grateful.
Audrey L.
Submitted 07/16/19
Before I found Dr. Sternberg, I lived with pilonidal disease for over 15 years. It started as a small bump on my tailbone that I figured happened because of a fall straight on my rear end. I was 12 years old at the time. As I ignored it through my teen years, it would swell and shrink. By the time I was 19, it had grown to the size of a half dollar in diameter, and finally it burst one afternoon. I saw a collection of doctors, having it lanced by a general physician, and even operated on twice by another colon and rectal surgeon. The results always seemed to just get worse, leaving me with a chronically open wound that drained and burst. This was how I lived my life through college and into adulthood. I was constantly working around the drainage and unbearable pain of sitting. I avoided long car trips, amusement park rides, and anything else that became painful. I'd resolved that this was just going to be part of my life I'd have to live around, and continued to do the things that caused pain. My mom would help me clean and bandage the wound twice daily. At 28 years young, I decided there had to be a better solution. That’s when I did some research and I found Dr. Sternberg. After reading his testimonials and seeing the results his patients had gotten with his cleft lift surgery, I had a strong feeling that he finally had the answer. After my first appointment with him, I found out that the previous treatments had in fact made the problem worse, but assuringly, he told me he could fix it. I had my cleft lift procedure 8 months ago, and it’s only gotten better since! I was most amazed by the fact that I was sitting the day of the surgery with no pain. Compared to my past surgeries, this recovery was easy! In the past, the operations I'd had on my tailbone included 6-8 weeks of lying on my side. After my cleft lift procedure, I was back on my feet the same week. I've since resumed exercising, going on trips, sitting in whatever chairs I want, all with zero pain. I was also amazed that the surgery had even hidden some of the previous surgery scaring, and left behind a much smaller scar than before. It used to really bother me not having a solution for this problem, and having to share with others when I had an issue with it. It was a long story! But now that story has gotten so much easier to tell. In fact I share it as often as I can, because I know having a bump on your butt isn't the easiest thing to talk about. When I share my story, I'm sure to shoutout Dr. Sternberg. Thanks to his expertise, I have my life back. I wish I had known about him years ago! That being said… if you have pilonidal disease, don't wait! Come see Dr. Sternberg. You don't have to have had failed treatments to come see him, the earlier the better! He's the best for pilonidal disease. I traveled for my procedure, and I'm glad I did. Thank you Dr. Sternberg. You and your staff made this experience incredible!
Mike V.
Submitted 07/12/19
listen up people never wrote a review Dr. sternberg is the only answer to your pilonidal cyst. he is the best of the best. i had the worst pilonidal cyst you could imagine, and he fixed me. listen to me....he will fix you. i traveled to see this highly skilled surgeon after several failed attempts. it was the best decision of my life. if you want your normal life back and your cyst gone, you will go to dr.sternberg. this surgeon has a "blackbelt" in pilonidal cyst surgery. he is confident, intelligent and has a very high skill set. if there were a mt. rushmore for the best pilonidal cyst surgeons in the country, it would only be four dr. jeffrey sternbergs carved into that granite and thats it. also very impressed with his staff. i asked a million questions and his staff was pleasant and extremely effecient. they answered my first question, and my next 500 questions with the same enthusiasm.
Ethan A.
Submitted 06/26/19
At 15 years old, I felt a bump at the top of my butt crack. I was not sure what it was so I went to our pediatrician. He told me it was hemorrhoids. So for a few months, I treated it as a hemorrhoid. It did not go away. I learned it was Pilonidal Disease. Then I went to a specialist and suffered through two years of procedures. Each procedure made my pilonidal cyst worse. First, I was sent to a dermatologist to laser the area. The dermatologist told me I didn’t need surgery. He cleaned out the cyst and lasered the hair. We were told there was a six week cycle for hair growth. Each time I came back for hair lasering, he cleaned out the cyst and told me it would heal on its own. It did not. More than one and a half years had gone by before any actual surgery was performed to resolve the Pilonidal Disease. I had an operation to remove the pilonidal lesion and the doctor closed it with fibrin glue. The doctor told me that the fibrin glue procedure had a 90% chance of working. A week after the first procedure was done, the cyst become infected and opened up. At no time before or after the fibrin glue procedure was performed did the doctor do a culture of the cyst to see if there was a bacterial infection. I was really upset and started researching procedures used in Pilonidal Disease. I learned at that point fibrin glue procedure is only used in mild cases of Pilonidal Disease. By the time I had the operation with fibrin glue, the Pilonidal Disease had become very aggressive, which caused a second hole to open up. But the doctor reassured me that this procedure was the right one and I should have it done again and he was sure that it would work well for the second time. Once again, the procedure failed and a third hole opened up above my anus. This was even more upsetting to me. I called the doctor and talked to him about what was happening and asked what he planned for the next step to resolve my issues. Since I was so upset, I began researching Pilonidal Disease, the procedures used to treat it, and the doctors that specialized in it. I asked about the Bascom procedure. He warned me that the Bascom procedure was much more invasive. I researched the Bascom method in more detail and then contacted Dr. Bascom himself. He told me the recovery time for the procedure was four weeks and had a very low rate of recurrence. He recommended that I speak to Dr. Sternberg in San Francisco. I spoke to Dr. Sternberg, who was trained by Dr. Bascom, and decided to have the Bascom procedure performed by Dr. Stenberg in San Francisco. Dr. Stenberg told me that the surgery would take about an hour. But after the surgery he told me that due to the advanced progression of the disease in the prior year and a half the surgery and cleanup was much more involved and took three hours. This was primarily due to the development of a large abscess by my anus that had to be repaired during surgery. Even after the first operation, I needed I still had to return to Dr. Stenberg to remove more of the pilonidal cyst. I had three in operations with Dr Stenberg. I am glad to say that I have been free of Pilonidal Disease now for over a year. The four years that I lived with Pilonidal Disease caused me both physical and emotional harm. I had three exit holes in my butt. The smell from the puss that stained my pants was very embarrassing. I had to wear sanitary napkins to high school. At sleep away camp, the other boys found the sanitary napkins and stuck them around my room. I did not ask a girl out on a date in fear of her finding out about this problem. I am glad to say my life is much better now and this unfortunate experience is behind me now. Thank you Dr. Stenberg for freeing me of this pain and embarrassment.
Jackson E.
Submitted 06/18/19
Couldn’t be happier with Dr. Sternberg. He and his staff are second to none. Dr. S has a great bedside manner and takes time to explain when others didn’t seem to know what to do. Andrea and the staff were patient, kind, and very quick to respond to many emails and calls from a worried Mom. I’m so glad we said no to an open wound surgery and made the trip to San Francisco. Parents, if you are considering cleft lift for your child, please look at success rates and recurrence rates and I’m sure you’ll agree that Dr. Sternberg is the right choice.
Lee S.
Submitted 06/12/19
My sixteen year old son had suffered with a pilonidal cyst which, after months of painful treatments and antibiotics, resulted in a traditional cyst removal surgery the first week of his Junior year of high school. After missing weeks of school and his entire football season we discovered that the wound had never healed. Out of desperation we conducted research and found Dr. Sternberg’’s clinic and immediately checked with my family members in the medical field, who indicated that the cleft lift procedure is the gold standard, but difficult to find someone actually skilled. Dr Sternberg is that doctor. We contacted his incredibly professional office staff, who reassured me that we were making a good decision to drive two hours to San Francisco for an exam and found an appointment time right away. A large percentage of Dr. Sternberg’s patients fly in to see him, and he has a comprehensive program to accommodate and educate the patients, which is key to the recovery. After examining my son it was determined that the deep incision had not ever healed and that the cleft lift would not only rectify this problem for good (most people come to him after multiple procedures) but that he would be 100% recovered and ready to participate in basketball and football after only thirty days, as opposed to his previous surgery’s four to six month recovery. My son had surgery and felt good enough to go out to dinner that night (not recommended, but he’s sixteen.) We stayed over night in San Francisco and met with Dr. Sternberg the next day for comprehensive instructions on post-surgery care. Within three days he was back to school, and is now fully recovered and playing sports. This has been an incredible relief for our son, and for us. If we had not found Dr. Sternberg I fear that we would have been in for a lifetime of surgeries and problems. I cannot recommend Dr. Sternberg enough.
Rene D.
Submitted 05/17/19
Almost a year out. Surgery worked. Still a little numb but a worthwhile trade against the problems I had before. The Dr.’s staff is great and very helpful. Living with a pilondial cyst is magnitudes harder than going with Sternberg’s method of surgery. Thank you Dr. Sternberg.
Andre N.
Submitted 05/15/19
Great care. Inspires confidence.
Henry O.
Submitted 04/30/19
Got cut
Carrie Z.
Submitted 04/23/19
I never thought I would see the light at the end of the tunnel, the day I would be healed. After three failed surgeries (one open excision surgery and two failed cleft- lift procedures) and dealing with this never ending nightmare for 4 and a half years, I can say that I am healed and I finally have my life back!! Thank you so much to Dr. Sternberg. He performed a final and SUCCESSFUL cleft- lift procedure. I couldn’t be more grateful for everything he has done for me. He truly cares about his patients! If you have been dealing with the emotional roller coaster of pilonidal disease and failed surgies, please see Dr. Sternberg he is the BEST surgeon out there.
Rachel P.
Submitted 02/11/19
I saw Dr. Sternberg for a cleft lift in November of 2018. He and his staff made the process as easy as possible - helping me figure out where to stay since I was coming in from Georgia, working with me on scheduling so that I could minimize my time off of work, and helping me when insurance issues popped up. Dr. Sternberg has answered every question I've had post-surgery, and I could not recommend him more highly. I'm very thankful to have this problem behind me (pardon the pun). My pilonidal flare-ups used to happen with even a 3-hour car ride. Two months post-surgery, my wife and I drove 15 hours in one day to get to Texas for a friends' wedding without issue, without fear, and without pain.
Alex S.
Submitted 02/09/19
He operated me to remove colon cancer. It was a difficult case since I was after a massive heart attack. He did everything as carefully as possible. I think he saved my life for what I am grateful to him. Always with a smile he gives hope to patients. Thank you doctor.
Boris G.
Submitted 01/02/19
I struggled with Pilonidal disease from when I was 19 until I was 25 (last year). I had many flare ups over the years that left me bed-ridden for weeks on end. I finally had enough and decided to research the best way to get rid of the condition for good. That's when I stumbled upon many people recommending Dr. Sternberg. Dr. Sternberg explained the whole procedure to me and made me feel very comfortable. I got the surgery and recovery was surprisingly very easy and quick. It's been over a year and I rarely even think of the condition I had anymore, as it is now cured for good. If you have Pilonidal disease, I would highly recommend for you to speak with Dr. Sternberg. He will explain what you are dealing with, the solution to this issue, how surgery is done, costs, flights, etc. All of this makes you know exactly what you are getting into, and makes you feel very comfortable. I can't thank Dr. Sternberg enough for allowing me to live my life without worrying about this annoying condition. Boris Glamocak - Toronto, Canada.
Heather N.
Submitted 01/01/19
When my 17 yr old son was diagnosed with Pilonidal disease I spent hours researching surgeons. I chose a highly reputable surgeon yet did not realize the importance of searching outside of my very large network of doctors in the Silicon Valley. We had faith in our first surgeon but wish that we would have known about Dr. Sternberg from the beginning. The first surgery left a 3.5 x 1.5 inch open cavity down my son’s butt crack that had to be packed by me 3 times daily for at least 2 weeks that turned to twice daily for 6 months. The cavity got smaller but never closed and continued to drain. Our first surgeon seemed to be out of town whenever I had concerns, home health care was never set up prior to our surgery and his on call doctor made my son feel like he had been raped with pain by poking around in the severely sensitive opening. Our experience seemed like a neverending nightmare. After 6 months postsurgery, I went to another surgeon for a second opinion about his recovery that I was questioning. She immediately said that he needed a second surgery and had heard of amazing things about Dr. Sternberg and his Cleft Lift Surgery at Professional meetings. She called Dr. Sternberg and the office got us in the next day. My son and I were very nervous about going through another horrible surgery that followed months of severe pain and care. Dr. Sternberg reassured us that this was a much easier recovery and provides 100% recovery. We even tried to put it off, but the pain and leaking became unbearable for my son who was a Senior in High School and wanted to make the most of his last basketball season. The office worked closely with our calendar on scheduling the surgery. Dr. Sternberg and staff answered every question I had with patience and even answered my emails. They also took exceptional care of us when we went in for follow up visits. They made us feel like family. Dr Sternberg and his staff really changed our lives and gave us hope and now has given us freedom from pilonidal disease. He really does exemplify in every possible measure all that is good in the health care profession and is just a wonderful person. If you are considering whether it is worth flying or driving far to see Dr. Sternberg, please stop procrastinating. He will save you time, money and much grief over the long haul. Especially for parents, thinking about their kid’s recovery. This disease is horrible on a kid’s self-esteem! I really hope that more primary care doctors can find out more about this clinic and procedure so that they will properly refer their patients. This disease is very common but poorly misunderstood in the medical community and is not treated correctly. Dr. Sternberg is incredibly experienced and is the only person you should see. I am forever grateful for the wonderful care we received.
Raina M.
Submitted 12/27/18
I had been suffering with Pilonidal Disease for three years. Not knowing much about the disease and how difficult it is to treat, I immediately went into my first operation after spending a few visits with my normal practitioner. They directed me to a local surgeon and told me they would fix the issue and I wouldn’t have to worry about it ever again. In December 2017, my first surgery took place and that is when things went downhill. My incision was very loosely sewn up after the operation, and no drain tube was inserted. I dealt with the incision for five months that popped open on its own and continued to drain and bleed daily, until I was rushed into an emergency surgery in May 2018. During my second surgery, a Wound Specialist at a highly reputable hospital in Colorado operated on me and claimed that he would take better care of me. After waking up from this surgery, I had a much larger incision with several layers of stitches and a drain tube. My surgeon promised me I would never deal with this again. I believed him until two days later I ended up in the Emergency Room with a fever of 102 degrees and a large infection in the surgical area. My incision had opened up AGAIN. Even with all of the layers of stitches. This resulted in me driving over an hour round trip every week to go visit the wound care center to have my wound flushed, cleaned and drained properly. I did this for months and things kept getting worse and worse. By the end of summer, I was back where I started, but things were even worse than before I ever got operated on. I started to wish I never went through with any operation and just dealt with the pain from the cyst. With undergoing two major operations, I had tons of scar tissue that ached when I sat down, and I couldn’t even lay on my back or sleep through a full night without tossing and turning or waking up due to pain. I became extremely depressed due to these circumstances and was under the impression I was going to deal with this disease for the rest of my life and never see a cure. Towards the end of summer, I came across Dr. Sternberg and his clinic in San Francisco. I used to read a blog post consisting of members that all had Pilonidal Disease, and one person swore by the Sternberg Clinic and claimed that they were 100% cured after trying everything else possible. I started to do more research and got to the point where I figured, why not? The least I can do is give them a try. I contacted the clinic, sent in my background with my cysts, and heard back very shortly. By September 2018, I was traveling to California with plans to undergo my third, and final surgery. This ended up being the best decision I have ever made in my life. Words can’t even express how thankful I am to have come across the Sternberg Clinic and to have taken a chance with Dr. Sternberg when I had my hopes let down twice by previous doctors. Dr. Sternberg is extremely intelligent regarding this topic, and I wish I had come across him years ago. If you are on the edge with this operation because you live out of state, I HIGHLY recommend that you take the time and the money to visit this clinic; they are the only people who will be able to treat you of this terrible disease. When Dr. Sternberg conducted my surgery, he came across a giant, infected mass that was caused by my two previous surgeries and he safely removed it and closed up my incision beautifully. Four months later, I am completely healed, can sleep on my back, can sit with no pain and can even work out with no issues whatsoever. My incision is fully closed, doesn’t drain or leak and it will never open back up. I even had one of the more severe cases, and I am 100% healed up thanks to Dr. Sternberg and I will never have to deal with this again. It doesn’t even seem real to me and I feel extremely lucky to even say this. Yes, the surgery was intense, and the recovery wasn’t a breeze, but I would do it all over again just to feel the way I do now. I am forever grateful for Dr. Sternberg and his employees because I am now able to live a normal, pain free life and put my past behind me. Everyone was super kind, extremely informative and you can tell they care about your well-being and just want you to be healed. He has conducted thousands of these surgeries and they have all been successful. Anyone out there that is dealing with this terrible disease should avoid the same mistakes I made and go see Dr. Sternberg the first time around because he is an expert in this field and he will take amazing care of you. The entire process was extremely easy even though I was traveling from out of town. Most of his patients are people traveling and they keep that in mind with scheduling and will make it a breeze for you. Within three days, I had my pre-op, surgery, and post-op and was on my way home a few days later. Do not make my mistake and do the right thing the first time around! Doctor Sternberg will take AMAZING care of anyone who has to deal with this terrible disease. I will forever be grateful for him.
Elizabeth W.
Submitted 12/07/18
This review is long overdue. We waited almost a year to make sure everything was alright with our son and getting over the trauma of the experience. I have to thank Dr. Sternberg and staff for all they did for him!!! Jacob went through so much from from August of 2016 to February of 2018 with the worst pain and embarrassment. Basically missed his senior year of high school due to his cyst and botched surgery in November of 2017. He ended up with a very resistant bacterial infection and had to be on iv antibiotics for several weeks prior to surgery on the recommendation and direction of Dr. Sternberg, who performed a very successful second surgery. Our son was a very difficult case and I have to say you can't go wrong with him, he is truly a magician!!
Ryan N.
Submitted 11/08/18
I have had multiple appointments and meetings with Dr. Sternberg since 2014, when I was first diagnosed with pilonidal disease. The first time I met Dr. Sternberg was during my initial “flare up” on my pilonidal cyst. I had gone to the ER, which refused to drain an abscess they were unfamiliar with, then proceeded to go to colorectal doctor in San Jose, who also refused to drain the abscess due to it “not being ready”. A few days later I was in Dr. Sternberg’s office, he immediately drained the abscess and discussed my long term option for pilonidal disease. He was extremely professional and left me feeling that I had reasonable options to deal with this disease. Following the initial draining, I had no issues or flare ups for two full years. By the time another occurred I had already moved out of the bay area and was lucky enough to find a physician who drained the abscess twice. After having have a constantly draining cyst for nearly 8-months, I contacted Dr. Sternberg again to set up a Cleft Lift surgery consultation. The consultation was straightforward, a review of my particular case and setting a date for the surgery, this was all done quickly. The front office staff (Andrea & Emon) where absolutely incredible working with me. They helped me schedule each appointment, surgery and post-op with Dr. Sternberg. In addition, they worked with me on my insurance (which refused to cover the out of network surgery) and gave me all the details of the surgical cost, out-patient facility cost and anesthesia cost. While I did pay out of pocket, they helped me understand my payment options and timing. They answered every question I had or directed my questions to Dr. Sternberg who responded quickly. Surgery day came around and I found myself at Presidio Surgery Center first thing on a Tuesday morning. The outpatient surgery center was professional, clean, quick and responded to all my inquiries within a reasonable time. I was pretty comfortable during my time there. They have nurses who take care of each step to prepare you for surgery. Prior to going into the operation room, I met quickly with the anesthesiologist (who was awesome) and Dr. Sternberg. I was able to get any last minute nervous questions out before the surgery. The surgery itself was a total blur, depending on your case you may go under full anesthesia or (what I believe is more common) get a spinal block. For me, this was the most nerve racking part. Do yourself a favor and don’t YouTube spinal blocks, just read about them. Mine was totally painless, prior to getting the shot itself, my anesthesiologist gave me what he called “surgical Gatorade”, which was really a shot into my IV that made me a bit light headed and definitely sucked the nerves away. I don’t even remember the actual spinal block. Next thing I know, I wake up in the post op recovery room. I felt pretty good, only concerning part of waking up was the numbness in my legs (spinal block) which took about an hour to go away. I was able to walk with no problems and had very minimal pain. I had a post op the next day with Dr. Sternberg where we went through the recovery process and steps to take to ensure proper healing (a boatload of gauze pads, paper tape and “rolling the flap”). For me, the recovery process was nearly painless (or at least a 100% less painful than having an active pilonidal cyst). You go through lots of gauze and tape, the rolling of the flap does not hurt significantly, more or less feels like pushing on a bruise. I was essentially given an antibiotic (for the open wound/surgical site/potential infection etc.), ibuprofen for swelling and a narcotic for pain. You are required to finish the antibiotic and ibuprofen, but take the narcotic as needed. I think I took 3 OxyContin pills in total and never more than ½ at a time, I’m also a pretty big dude, so I clearly wasn’t in a ton of pain. I encourage everyone to destroy (ask your pharmacist how) narcotic pills once you are no longer using them for this surgeries pain management, those things are no joke. The longest portion of the recovery was the drain hole, which took about 3-4 weeks to close up after the drain was removed. I am now approximately 50 days clear of surgery, everything is closed and healed up. In fact, I was able to start power lifting, biking and running at about day 40 (would have been earlier but I was waiting for the drain hole to close). I feel amazing, no pain, a little numbness, but pretty dang good. I can sit for long periods, put weight on my tail bone and no longer worry about a long flight or car ride. I highly encourage anyone suffering from pilonidal disease to reach out to the Sternberg Clinic, they have honestly changed my life.
Rhodri W.
Submitted 10/31/18
I had a cleft lift done by Dr. Sternberg in September of this year. I flew to San Fransisco all the way from Canada because of his stellar reputation and how helpful his staff had been to me even just on the phone as I navigated the difficulties of living with pilonidal. Even though I had to pay out of pocket and give up (free) surgery in Canada, it was worth every penny to access care that would allow me to return to my highly active lifestyle and career as a forest firefighter and muay thai athlete. I couldn't believe how little pain I experienced during my recovery and how fast it went, when I had read of others spending months in agony only to have their pilonidal return. Thank you Dr. Sternberg for solving my pilonidal disease once and for all! It was such a relief to receive the treatment that you and all your wonderful staff gave me!