Top 5 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Spine Surgeon
Are you considering spine surgery to treat your chronic back, neck, or joint pain?
Are you interested in learning more about the procedure before making a decision? Then this article is for you.
The American Association of Neurological Surgeons reports that Americans received over 700,000 spinal injections and nearly 400,000 spinal surgeries in 2009 alone.
Spine surgery can be a very effective way to treat chronic pain from conditions such as degenerative disc disease, scoliosis, and other anomalies.
However, finding the right physician to perform a spine surgery requires knowing your options. Here are the top factors to consider when choosing a spine surgeon:
1. Type of Training
A simple online search for “spine surgeons” yields dozens of local results across the U.S. Although all spine surgeons should meet the minimum education requirements of a four-year degree and residency, not all physicians complete specialty training in spinal surgery.
Make sure to ask about your potential surgeon’s level of experience and long-term commitment to specialization.
2. Hospital Affiliation
There are several types of facilities that can provide spine surgery, from small outpatient centers to large hospitals with multiple operating rooms and anesthesia options. The best hospital for you depends on your personal preferences as well as whether or not you plan to have a minimally invasive or complex procedure that requires general anesthesia.
3. Type of Surgical Approach
The most common type of spine surgery is an anterior approach where the front part of the vertebral body is opened via a horizontal incision. Other types of surgery include minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
4. Success Rates
Every spine surgery has a different success rate for relieving pain and restoring function, so it’s important to find a surgeon who performs your particular procedure often. The American Association of Neurological Surgeons publishes annual statistics on common operations such as laminectomy, microdiscectomy, and cervical fusion.
This article will help with managing back pain.
Once you know what type of spine surgeon you want based on training and approach, make sure that he or she is board certified by the American Board of Neurological Surgery (ABNS), which provides validated testing services for neurosurgeons.
According to the ABNS, less than one-third of practicing neurosurgeons have a valid license, which is a clear indication of the necessity of credentialing.
Also, it’s important to start reading online reviews of different surgeons. This will give you an insight into the best certified spine surgeon.
Want More Help Choosing a Spine Surgeon?
It’s important to make sure you are well educated on the various factors that go into choosing a spine surgeon. Luckily, we have your back!
With the information in this article, it should be much easier for you to find an experienced doctor who will give you the care and attention you need to begin healing as soon as possible after surgery.
We hope that you enjoyed this article. If you did, be sure to check out the rest of our blog, where you will find helpful articles on spine surgery recovery, your options for surgeons, and an insight into the spine surgery experience.