Sheeraz Qureshi, MD, MBA, and Young Lu, BA, published an article examining cost-effectiveness studies in spine in The Spine Journal.
The article reviews peer-reviewed literature on spine surgery addressing cost-effectiveness of treatments and technologies. After their study, the researchers concluded:
• Cervical and lumbar surgeries are reasonably cost-effective at two years postoperatively
• There are less than $100,000 per quality adjusted life years gained
• Spine surgeries become more cost-effective over time due to the sustained clinical improvements and relatively low additional incurred costs
• Transfusion avoidance technology is not cost-effective due to the low risk of complications associated with allogenic transfusions
• Intraoperative neuromonitoring and imaging modalities are cost-saving and cost-effective, but their cost-effectiveness is dependent on the baseline rate of neurologic complications and implant misplacement
The authors also recommend more rigorous studies to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of recombinant bone morphogenetic protein. "The cost-effectiveness of technologies and treatments in spine care is dependent on their durability as well as the rate and severity of the baseline clinical problems that the treatment was designed to address," the authors conclude.
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