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Failed Back Surgery Syndrome Statistics Don’t Tell the Whole Story


About 400,000 people in the United States undergo spine surgery each year. Of those who undergo open neck or back operations, recent surveys have discovered that 30-40 percent experience some form of postoperative complications. Raw failed back surgery syndrome statistics do not tell the whole story, however. Behind the numbers you’ll find a significant population whose mental well-being has been compromised because of the bitter disappointment that comes after the final step of surgery fails to relieve debilitating nerve compression symptoms.

The Mental and Emotional Toll of FBSS

While failed back surgery syndrome statistics show that tens of thousands of patients do not gain physical relief from their operations, there is no way to gauge the emotional cost inflicted nationwide by FBSS. As difficult as it is to handle the debilitating symptoms of spinal nerve compression before an operation, dealing with the disappointment of FBSS can be devastating. Perhaps the most damaging aspect of FBSS is the potential to become deeply depressed after optimism was dashed. One of the most potent tools to combat despair is education.

The Minimally Invasive Advantage

If you have the option of undergoing a minimally invasive spine procedure, rather than an open neck or back operation, the numbers say it is well worth it. The most significant statistic from a three-year study conducted by Laser Spine Institute was the contrast between the infection rate for open back surgery (4.5 percent) and endoscopic spine surgery (0.1 percent). In addition, only 4 percent of patients who underwent minimally invasive spine surgery reported complications, as opposed to the 31 percent of open back surgery patients.

To learn more, contact Laser Spine Institute. Our surgeons pioneered the use of endoscopic techniques to alleviate the symptoms of degenerative spine conditions.

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