The North American Spine Society Executive Committee has penned a letter to the Washington Post in response to a story about the necessity of spinal fusions.
The article, titled "Spinal fusions serve as case study for debate over when certain surgeries are necessary," ran in the Washington Post earlier this week. While the letter recognized unnecessary surgery as a "serious issue," the authors felt it inappropriate to condemn all spinal fusions.
"As in ALL surgical procedures, the key is the surgical indication for the individual patient. Overuse or underuse are both bad medicine and do the patient a disservice. There is universal support for spinal fusion in cases of instability, fracture, tumor, infection and deformity," the letter notes.
The letter also outlined NASS efforts to partner with payers on developing evidence-based guidelines for surgical intervention and mentioned spinal fusion as undergoing rigorous scrutiny.
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