Q:

What should you look for in a spinal fusion surgeon?

A:

Quick Answer

Look for an experienced surgeon who specializes in spinal fusion rather than a more general surgeon, suggests Spine-health. To ensure the surgeon is up-to-date on the latest advancements in technology, at least 50 percent of his practice should be related to spine health.

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Full Answer

Spend some time interviewing the surgeon to evaluate her bedside manner, notes Spine-health. Look for a doctor who answers your questions clearly and honestly. Make sure you feel comfortable asking the questions and that the doctor is willing to schedule enough time to discuss your concerns. Avoid surgeons who seem annoyed by your questions or are unwilling to take the time to make you feel comfortable with the procedure.

Look for surgical teams that have received awards or other recognition for clinical excellence, suggests Rothman Institute. This type of recognition applies to the entire team and facility, and it can help ensure that everyone involved in the surgery provides top-quality care.

Ask the surgeon for references from other patients, as suggested by Spine-health. Doctors need consent forms to release patient names, but most experienced surgeons have previous patients who are willing to share their experiences. Make sure any surgeon you choose is board-certified in neurological or orthopedic surgery, and see if you can find a surgeon who has had additional training in the form of spine-specific fellowships.

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