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Is Outpatient Spinal Surgery an Option?

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Is Outpatient Spinal Surgery an Option?

  • Dr. Charla Fischer
  • Dec 04, 2018

Outpatient surgery centers have become increasingly popular in recent years for patients seeking an alternative to hospital stays. You might think that only the simplest of procedures are candidates for an outpatient center and that spinal surgery would not qualify. However, improvements in techniques and technology have made spine surgeries possible outside of a traditional hospital. NYC Spine Surgeon Dr. Fischer at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City offers spinal surgeries in an outpatient setting for patients who are good candidates.

Outpatient spine surgery center
An outpatient spine surgery center is specifically focused on performing spine surgeries in an ambulatory care setting. This allows an even higher degree of training and specialization for spinal surgeries than offered at an outpatient facility. Outpatient spine surgery centers may employ unique anesthetic techniques, patient moving strategies, or post-surgical care.

The main goal of an outpatient surgery center is to return patients to their normal lives as quickly as possible. This means short procedures and quick recoveries. Many patients go home on the same day as surgery, making it a more cost-effective and comfortable option than traditional hospital surgeries. The smaller medical setting usually translates to a more personal and convenient experience as well.

Overall, outpatient surgery centers usually offer the same medical services as hospitals with the exception of discharging patients the same day or following morning. That means any type of ongoing care like physical therapy or rehabilitation will be provided on an outpatient basis or at the patient’s home, instead of in the hospital. The most common types of procedures in outpatient spine surgery centers treat degenerative conditions like herniated discs, spinal stenosis, or degenerative disc disease. Other popular procedures are spinal fusion, lumbar and cervical disc replacement, or lumbar and cervical decompression. Dr. Fischer often uses minimally invasive techniques to provide shorter surgeries with less complications and faster recoveries.

If a complication occurs during surgery at an outpatient spine surgery center, it is handled in the same way as in a hospital setting. The same equipment and highly trained staff are available in outpatient centers. If a complication means that the patient requires additional extended treatment, the patient will be transferred to a hospital for further care.

What to expect
Dr. Fischer will provide all instructions you need before your outpatient spinal surgery. Common examples are stopping medications, eliminating food prior to surgery, and arranging transportation home. These types of preparations are typically the same for outpatient centers and hospitals. After surgery, you’ll be transferred to a recovery room until you can be safely discharged. You’ll be given instructions for care during your recovery at home. As far as costs go, an outpatient surgery center bills similarly to a hospital, but the charges may be noticeably less than a hospital. There are lower operating costs and less unrelated fees in an outpatient center. If you need spinal surgery, consult with Dr. Fischer at NYU Langone Medical Center to see if an outpatient procedure is best for you. Patients have the final say in where their spinal surgery will be performed.

Contact Dr. Fischer today to schedule a consultation.

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