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How to choose a spine surgeon

When your internist or physiatrist or physical therapist suggest you see a spine surgeon, how do you choose?
There are multiple avenues people arrive at the surgeon’s doorstep. The most common pathway is the recommendation of the patient’s medicine doctor. However, the recommendation is not always pointing the patient to the right surgeon for the maneuver. Even within the world of spine surgery, the surgeon’s have their area of expertise. For example, some are experts in pediatric scoliosis surgery. Others are experts in adult disc surgery. The specific medical issue should dictate to whom the patient goes to.
One way to further understand the issues is to meet a spine approach surgeon after a diagnosis and treatment plan have been offered. The spine approach surgeon is in a good position to help the patient, as they are operating with many different spine surgeons, and have a unique view of the surgical options. Addtionally, certain hospitals might be better than others in regards to the procedure, and an approach surgeon who operates at multiple institutions again has this vantage point.
As spine surgery is a complicated, serious, and important maneuver, it behooves the patient to have qualified opinions. Obtaining an opinion from the approach surgeon can be part of this arsenal in the decision making process.