How Do I Choose the Best Spine Surgeon in My Local Area?

Did you know that if a cortisone shot fails after at least three attempts, sometimes surgery is the next option? With that, did you know that at least 20% to 40% of back surgeries fail? This isn’t always the fault of the physician of course but because of the complexity of spine procedures, it’s important to do your research on the surgeon.

When looking for professionals within the healthcare industry, it can be difficult to decide who is the best choice for a physician. Do you want someone close by or do you have no choice but to travel a bit farther for what you need?

Another factor is their success rate in the medical industry with the procedure you want. The last thing you want to do is spend time and money on treatments that may not be beneficial to you.

To help make this process of finding the best spine surgeon easier, we’ve created five tips for how to choose the perfect spine surgeon in your local area.

Do Your Research to Find the Best Spine Surgeon

Just as with any other doctor, you’ll want to do your research before choosing a spine surgeon. You can find out a lot about a surgeon by looking at their website or reading reviews online. An even better idea would be to seek a referral from your primary care doctor.

They usually have a good insight on local specialists and could give you their honest opinion before referring you.

Ask Questions

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, it’s time to start asking questions. Not all spine surgeons operate in the same way, interact with patients the same, or even know the same surgical techniques.

You should also ask about the cost of procedures so you know what to check for within your insurance policy. Oftentimes a surgeon’s private practice or hospital can check coverage for operations for you.

You want to make sure that they are able to answer your questions without hesitation or confusion. If there’s any hesitance on their end then it might be time to look at different options.

Check Their Credentials

It may seem obvious or it may not but you should always check a surgeon’s license before committing yourself to them so you know they have all of the necessary qualifications under their belt. You can usually find this information online easily enough through a simple search which will give insight into their education and credentials.

It will also give you an idea of what to expect from them as well as how much experience they have with your condition or medical needs.

Ask About Their Success Rate

While not every surgery will go perfectly, it’s still important that the surgeon has some sort of success rate with procedures similar to yours.

Try asking, what makes a good candidate for this surgery? Or ask, what is the average success rate of this surgery and how many have you performed with positive outcomes for the patient?

Ask Around

As with many other professionals, spine surgeons also have online reviews which will give you an idea of what others are saying about them in terms of their professionalism and skills when it comes to cortisone shots or anything else you may be interested in.

If you don’t already have a prospect in mind, be sure to ask friends and family members any healthcare providers they may know of in your area. If they had a good experience, then you can keep that in mind when making your choice.

On the other hand, if they had a bad experience with a certain provider, you’ll want to stay away from them. Word-of-mouth is one of the best ways to get honest feedback about healthcare professionals.

Keep a Few Things in Mind

Remember to be investigative and unapologetically curious when it comes to searching for the best spine surgeon in your area. Here are a few key takeaways; ask about the surgeon’s experience, techniques used, and success rates with different procedures.

If you’re interested in more helpful topics, check out more of our content.