Patients can determine Spine Surgery Results

Patients can determine Spine Surgery Results

YOU can make a difference in your SPINE SURGERY results!  While patients often will look towards the skill of the surgeon, there are other important factors that will determine the outcome.

Following post operative instructions can have a significant effect on the outcome.  YOU can improve your SPINE SURGERY OUTCOMES by listening to your SURGEON.

At the 2014 North American Spine Society Meeting,  there was a Paper Presentation by the Spine Specialists at Johns Hopkins University titled “Health Behavior Change Counseling: Can a Brief Intervention Increase Patient Activation in Persons Undergoing Spine Surgery?”

To summarize,  the study tried to determine the importance of patients participating and taking ownership for their health and recovery.  The concept of PATIENT ACTIVATION ( “PA-propensity to engage in adaptive health behaviors”) was identified as an important factor in that ownership process.

PA is the measure of the influence of patient factors on health behaviors (like physical activity) on the health outcomes such as continued pain,  disability and function.    It is generally accepted that increase PA is associated with increase compliance to activities,  and thus less disability.

The Hopkins Specialists designed a study by which patients prior to Spine Surgery had a telephone counseling session,  using motivational interviewing techniques to improve the PA amongst the pre-operative patients.    PA pre and post interview was measured using a Patient Activition Measures questionnaire.    The study definitely showed an increase in the PA score after the telephonic interview.

While the study does not show the results of the surgery after the measurements of the PA,  there was a suggestion that the telephone interview increased the PA,  and therefore,  will likely increase the chances of a better outcome.

The bottomline is YOU can CONTROL your SPINE SURGERY RESULT.  Make sure you have a good understanding of your role in the recovery and the activities after surgery.  Successful Spine Surgery is a team approach,  and YOU,  the PATIENT are part of the TEAM.

Citations

  • Rätsep T, Abel A, Linnamägi Ü. Patient involvement in surgical treatment decisions and satisfaction with the treatment results after lumbar intervertebral discectomy. Eur Spine J. 2014 Apr;23(4):873-81. PubMed PMID: 24249555

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