The rise and fall of Laser Spine Institute: A timeline

Written by Eric Oliver | May 16, 2019 | Print  |

From its origins as a single operating room facility to its peak as a national spine-focused orthopedic chain, Tampa, Fla.-based Laser Spine Institute performed about 100,000 surgical procedures before a rash of lawsuits and cash flow issues eventually caused it to shut down and cease all clinical operations March 1.

Here is a timeline of coverage on Laser Spine Institute's journey:

2005: Laser Spine Institute opens in 2005, the Tampa Bay Times reports.

2007: LSI opens locations in Arizona, Philadelphia and Oklahoma City.

2007-18: Several entities sue Laser Spine Institute, including most notably Terry "Hulk Hogan" Bollea, who alleges Laser Spine performed a series of ineffective procedures that cost him $50 million.

August 2013: LSI opens an outpatient surgery center in The Woodlands, Texas.

June 2014: LSI readies to open practices in Cleveland, St. Louis and Cincinnati before the end of 2014. LSI had surgery centers in Tampa, Scottsdale, Ariz., Philadelphia and Oklahoma City at the time.

September 2014: LSI plans to open a $56 million headquarters and ASC in Tampa.

June 2016: LSI lays off 70 employees, or 6 percent of its 1,200-employee workforce.

December 2016: LSI appoints Roger Cary as president and CEO. Mr. Cary would serve as LSI's last leader. At the time, LSI had locations in Tampa, Scottsdale, Philadelphia, Oklahoma City, Cleveland, St. Louis and Cincinnati.

2018: A Pennsylvania court orders LSI to pay $20 million to the estate of a deceased Ohio woman.

October 2018: LSI announces its Oklahoma City location will close Nov. 30.

December 2018: A federal court rules that LSI owed a competing laser spine surgical center $264 million in damages. The competing center brought the lawsuit in 2006, accusing LSI of breach of fiduciary duty, conspiracy, defamation, slander, tortious interference and violation of a Florida law.

Late 2018, early 2019: LSI closes three surgical centers, reduces operating cost structure.

Feb. 22, 2019: LSI's banks freeze the company's accounts and strip the cash out of them.

Feb. 25, 2019: LSI management reaches a deal with a bank to fund accrued payroll and make limited other payments. The bank gives a timeline to find an investor.

March 1, 2019: LSI closes its Tampa headquarters as well as its remaining Ohio, Arizona and Missouri locations after it was unable to find an investor. LSI lays off 354 employees and cancels all procedures.

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