How do you pick a back surgeon?

How do you pick a back surgeon?

How do you pick a back surgeon?

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You have back pain and are miserable. Your Primary Care has sent you for an MRI and recommended you see a back surgeon. On your way home you notice (because hey, you’re looking for a back surgeon) billboards all over the place “free MRI reviews”, “have your surgery in one day and go back the next” and so on. Good looking people with a Band-Aid on their back make good advertising but does it make sense to choose a surgeon that way?

Let’s talk….

The first thing you need to do is talk to people; your Primary Care, any medical people you know (they hear things) and people who have been through this. Check online for information on Physician Grading and look up your physician. Any grade less than 4 stars is something to research further.

Second is to know who your physician is. Is he/she someone you have spent time with? Did they review your films and discuss other ways of improving your back before you have surgery? Do you feel comfortable in their office? Are you greeted personally or are you seated with several other people and expected to wait?

Third is to get a second opinion. Unless it is an emergency, never have surgery without getting another unbiased opinion. A good surgeon would never discourage this and in fact should welcome another opinion.

Fourth is to know your expected results. Though many companies brag about the one day miracle they can do on your back, any competent and efficient minimally invasive surgeon will get you out of the center/ hospital the same day. You want to check infection rates, reoperation rates and satisfaction scores.

Finally, go with your gut. Are you comfortable, confident and satisfied with your research? If you are not, continue looking. This is your back for life and you need to take care of it. A little time for research and increased knowledge is never wasted.

Citations

  • Kurd MF, Lurie JD, Zhao W, Tosteson T, Hilibrand AS, Rihn J, Albert TJ, Weinstein JN. Predictors of treatment choice in lumbar spinal stenosis: a spine patient outcomes research trial study. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2012 Sep 1;37(19):1702-7. PubMed PMID: 22426453

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Author and Contributor to www.Spine-Health.com – July, 2015

www.Spine-Health.com/author/john-h-shim-md-facs

Chief of Surgery, Mease Countryside and Mease Dunedin Hospitals, Safety Harbor and Dunedin, Florida. 2014-2016.

Orthopaedic Section Chief Mease Countryside Hospital; Safety Harbor, Florida Mease Dunedin Hospital; Dunedin, Florida.2008-2013

Board Member Morton Plant Mease Research Council

Co-Director of Mease Neuro-Ortho Spine Center Mease Dunedin Hospital; Dunedin, Florida.

One of “6 Spine Physicians Ranked #1 on Google” – December 2016

Top Ten Most Liked Spine Surgeons on the Internet – July 2016

2016 Spine Surgeons to Know list – January 2016

2014 Spine Specialists to know list – September 2014

One of Ten Leaders of Certified Spine Programs – December 2011

 

The Best Orthopedics in Tampa

The information provided on this website does not provide or should be considered medical advice. It is not a substitute for diagnosis or treatment of any condition. The information provided is for informational purposes only. You should not rely solely on the information provided on this website in making a decision to pursue a specific treatment or advice. You should consult directly with a professional healthcare provider.

As a condition of using the information on this website, ShimSpine and its physicians are not responsible for any advice, diagnosis, treatment or outcome you may obtain.

ShimSpine.com is completely self-funded. No outside funds are accepted or used. This website does not utilize paid advertising as a source of revenue.
Outpatient Spine Surgery Considerations. www.Spine-Health.com. January 2016.

What is Spinal Stenosis? www.Spine-Health.com. October 2015.

Surgeon insights on the Changing Landscape of Orthopedic Care. OrthopedicToday. June 2014

Chapter 33: Interspinous Spacers. Shim JH, Mazza JS, Kim DH Published in Minimally Invasive Percutaneous Spinal Techniques. Elsevier Health Sciences, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Published 2011)

Chapter 35: Minimally Invasive Percutaneous Lumbar Fusion Technique.Shim JH, Mazza JS, Kim DH Published in Minimally Invasive Percutaneous Spinal Techniques. Elsevier Health Sciences, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Published 2011)

March 2010 Minimally Invasive Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Annual Meeting New Orleans, Louisiana February 2010

February 2010 A Review of Dynamic Stabilization in the Lumbar Spine Selby Spine Symposium; Park City, Utah

November 2009 Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Community Based Lecture; Tampa, Florida

September 2009 Instructor/Proctor Minimally Invasive Lumbar Cadaver Lab; Tampa, Florida

February 2009 New Spinal Technology: Cervical Disc Replacement and Interspinous Spacers. Selby Spine Symposium; Park City, Utah

February 2008 The Degenerative Spine: The Role of Dynamic Lumbar Stablization and Interspinous Spacers Selby Spine Symposium; Park City, Utah

October 2008 Emerging Technology and Techniques in Spinal Surgery Orthopaedics in the 21st Century Symposium; Morton Plant Mease Healthcare; Largo, Florida

September 2007 Emerging Technology in Spinal Surgery Orthopaedics in the 21st Century Symposium; Morton Plant Mease Healthcare; Largo, Florida

October 2006 Emerging Technology and Techniques in Spinal Surgery Orthopaedics in the 21st Century Symposium; Morton Plant Mease Healthcare; Largo, Florida

May 2005 The Role of Kyphoplasty in the Treatment of Vertebral Compression Fractures Mease Neurosciences Symposium; Clearwater, Florida
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