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Old 04-03-2012, 02:08 PM   #1
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Question What kind of doctor do I look for, for back pain

I just called the office of an orthopedic surgeon and I told her about my back pain and she said that they do surgery there. Is there a different kind I should be looking for. I am looking for one that works with a specific hospital near me and they have a list for orthopedic surgeons, but not just for orthopedics.
I am looking for one to assess me so I can get an MRI. Last night I was at the ER and in the room for 3 hours. At night all they could do was a regular Xray and all he could tell me was there was nothing degenerative. He gay me a scrip for pain meds and swelling.

 
Old 04-03-2012, 02:49 PM   #2
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Re: What kind of doctor do I look for, for back pain

You want an orthopedic surgeon that specializes in the spine. Before they would even consider surgery, you would have imaging done, and not just an x-ray. You should be able to find out who is affiliated with which hospital by asking the doctor or the hospital even. A neurosurgeon that specializes in the spine is another option.

 
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Old 04-03-2012, 03:53 PM   #3
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Re: What kind of doctor do I look for, for back pain

I am in Canada so my advice might not apply to you. The first step would be to go to a regular family physician and get checked out. If he thinks you have a problem that requires further investigation he can order an MRI or refer you to a specialist. Back problems are usually treated conservatively before any surgery is considered.
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Old 04-03-2012, 04:52 PM   #4
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Re: What kind of doctor do I look for, for back pain

Some orthopedic spine surgeons will only see a patient who has been referred to them, but every one I have seen I have not needed a referral. You should be able to go onto the website for the hospital or medical group you want to use and look for an orthopedic spine surgeon or a neurosurgeon. Then you may have to go a step further and look up the surgeon by name to see if he specializes in the neck and back or maybe it will just say "spine."

If the medical practices in your area are structured differently, you may have to work through your family physician, internist or PCP. That, or a physiatrist might need to be your point of contact into getting in to see a spine specialist...but that would be somewhat unusual. I know I helped a lady from the Tampa area find a doctor and she just called up and made an appointment.

If you want insurance to cover the cost of MRI, I believe it must be ordered by a physician.

 
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