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Harmony5 08-02-2006 10:58 PM

Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?

Who would you recommend for a Lumbar Fusion - Orthopedic Surgeon or Neurosurgeon? As long as they specialize in the spine does it matter?


Harmony :wave:

shawley 08-03-2006 06:16 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
Thats a very good question , my opinion is , if it has anything to do with nerves in my spine a neurosurgeon that specialize in the spine would be better , but for a spine fusion or whatever a orthopedic spine specialist , Oh did I mention ? make sure they were fellowship trained..

I had a neurosurgeon that was just a general surgeon that did my first fusion ,my spine specialist now said he did an ok job.
Do some research on your doctor your picking.

Good luck

caszyman 08-03-2006 06:20 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
For my daughter's surgery we went with an orthopaedist. She had spondylolisthesis so I figured the ortho was the way to go. Since she was 16 we went with a pediatric ortho. As Shawley says, make sure they have that extra fellowship year in spines. That's so important. Good luck. cas

Coast Guard Dad 08-03-2006 01:20 PM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
good advice above here, I saw both, the Neuro was to busy with serious matters as fixing brain cancers, and would not touch me, so I went to an Ortho that had a track record of working on spines only. [[COLOR="Sienna"]removed[/COLOR]] keep away from the part time General surgeons or smaller hospitals that practice now and then. It is worth the drive to get the job done right.

mmusilli 08-03-2006 01:55 PM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
I recommend a neurosurgeon that has completed his spine fellowship AND specializes ONLY in spine and not brain, etc... Orthos sometimes specialize in spine, but mostly also work on knees, shoulder, etc... Either way, check references, makes sure they completed spine fellowship and perhaps even ask them how many years experience they have and how many fusions they have done..

God Bless..


carol632 08-03-2006 02:44 PM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
I have always gotten along better with my ortho's than the neuros. Strangely enough, the neuro's don't actually get a spine fellowship because their whole practice is the spine and nerves. Whereas the ortho's specialize in ALL the joints and bones unless they have gone ahead and spent a year studying and working for their fellowship.

Neuros that I have seen always seem to have a shirt that is over-stuffed and a huge ego to go with it. I prefer doctors who are more down to earth. So, after their credentials and their job performance, the next thing to look at is the "bedside manner". That's my opinion and I'm sticking to it.


momzworkin 08-03-2006 02:59 PM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
I went to a fellowship trained ortho who specializes in the back and neck. He has been doing this for ten years and has a great team and is easy to talk to. My hospital experiance was less than great but at no fault to my dac's office. If anyone is looking in the Dallas area for a referral just let me know. They were VERY detailed in what would happen before, during and after the surgery. They check in (by phone) every afternoon at my home to see if all is going ok. This will happen till next week when the last of the staples comes out but it gives me a chance to ask questions that come up.
Good luck-

LilyHoff 08-03-2006 06:00 PM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
The doctor that performed my fusion is an orthopaedic surgeon with an Orthopaedic Spine Surgery Fellowship. I did a lot of research, asked a lot of questions and couldn't have asked to have been in better hands.
I was impressed with his knowledge & experience but I also look for a good bedside manner and at first he seemed "all business". I later realized that surprisingly he's genuinely a shy man and once we got to know eachother I learned that not only is he a skilled surgeon but also has an excellent bedside manner.

Sorry for my long winded response! :)


Harmony5 08-04-2006 12:47 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
Thank you ALL for your replies. They are all very helpful to me and very good advice I will follow. I know it's so important to find the best for such a major surgery.

God bless you all and I hope you are doing well! Thanks again!

Harmony :wave:

shawley 08-04-2006 05:50 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
Carol A nuerosurgeon without a fellowship works on the brain and spinal cord , It really depends on what they specialize in..Some just the brain / spinalcord. I would want them to have the fellowship before they cut me open.

Orthopedic SPINE specialist works with the spine , their speciality..But if I had to have an operation where they need to move nerves and its complicated to get to ,thats where a good neuro would come in.


badtoejam 08-05-2006 01:36 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
I live in a city in Indiana of about 400 - 450,000 people, and my GP doc wanted me to go to I.U. Medical Center (which is about 3 hrs +/- from here) because he wanted another opinion and all the (HMO) neurosurgeons here that I can see work out of the same office, so I was sent there. They did some xrays, and nerve tests, but its there that I was advised to get the discogram done. I thought it would be easier to get it done here so I wouldnt have to travel after the procedure, but to my dismay, it seemed like there was only one doctor locally that could do it, and we were having a hard time reaching him to make an appt. With that kind of odds, I decided to go ahead back up to Indy to get it done since they are much more advanced medically. It was just a tad scary wondering how much experience the doctor here had when almost no one even knew of a discogram, so like I said, I decided to go where they had the proper knowledge and facilities to do it. :eek:

RozIA 08-05-2006 07:38 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
[SIZE="5"]Neurosurgeon without a doubt[/SIZE]

beachgirl01 08-05-2006 08:45 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
Hi there,
I have an ortho. He also specializes in the spine and nerves so he's an excellent doctor/surgeon. All you need to do is go with your gut. If you need to have a few consultation until you find the right one, than so be it. You need to be perfectly comfortable with whoever it is that you chose. Good luck, I hope all goes well. Take care.

shawley 08-06-2006 09:11 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
[QUOTE=RozIA] Neurosurgeon without a doubt [/QUOTE] With a spine fellowship ;)

HAGFAN 08-07-2006 07:52 AM

Re: Orthopedic or Neurosurgeon for Fusion?
I guess I had the best of both worlds, My doc, a Neurosurgeon, did my fusion. He had his partner who is a Orthopedic doc assist him on my surgery.
Just from my past experiences I would stick with a Neurosurgeon, If you think about it your spine is one big nerve, whoever you choose check the history of your doc!
I had to laugh a bit, there was a post before about someones doc being "a nice guy". Well, I have had better luck with the kind of doc thinks on a level quite higher then mine, bookworm, genius, nerd (for lack of a better word) someone that lives and breathes to know the spine. (This is my doc) If I want someone to talk about the big game with, I will look up my phyical therapist :0)

Good Luck

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