A concise, evidence-based medical tool that saves you money

Question:

Does back fusion surgery for treatment of chronic low back pain help with pain and function more than conservative treatments over a decade?

Answer:

No
MedHead Confidence Score: 2
Amount Saved: $60,000 cost of spinal fusion post
Med-O-Meter

2

MedHead Message:

I think most people who are quick to criticize all surgery are walking a tight line here. The evidence is definitely not robust, but enough to push over the edge toward conservative care due to the risks of surgery v. little to no risk with conservate care.

References:

"1. Hedlund R1, Johansson C2, Hägg O3, Fritzell P4, Tullberg T. . The long-term outcome of lumbar fusion in the Swedish lumbar spine study Spine J. 2016 May;16(5):579-87. doi: 10.1016/j.spine.2015.08.065. Epub 2015 Sep 9 2. http://cochranelibrary-wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD010264.pub2/full 3. Roland G., Ebell, M. Top POEMs of 2016 Consistent with the Principles of the Choosing Wisely Campaign American Family Physician Vol 96 Num 4 P 235-236. 4. https://health.costhelper.com/back-surgery.html"

 

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