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Ignoring the sacroiliac joint in chronic low back pain is costly

Authors Polly D, Cher D

Received 29 September 2015

Accepted for publication 1 December 2015

Published 21 January 2016 Volume 2016:8 Pages 23—31


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Qian Ding

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Giorgio Lorenzo Colombo

David W Polly,1,2 Daniel Cher3

1Department of Orthopedic Surgery, 2Department of Neurosurgery, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, 3SI-BONE, Inc., San Jose, CA, USA

Background: Increasing evidence supports minimally invasive sacroiliac joint (SIJ) fusion as a safe and effective treatment for SIJ dysfunction. Failure to include the SIJ in the diagnostic evaluation of low back pain could result in unnecessary health care expenses.
Design: Decision analytic cost model.
Methods: A decision analytic model calculating 2-year direct health care costs in patients with chronic low back pain considering lumbar fusion surgery was used.
Results: The strategy of including the SIJ in the preoperative diagnostic workup of chronic low back pain saves an expected US$3,100 per patient over 2 years. Cost savings were robust to reasonable ranges for costs and probabilities, such as the probability of diagnosis and the probability of successful surgical treatment.
Conclusion: Including the SIJ as part of the diagnostic strategy in preoperative patients with chronic low back pain is likely to be cost saving in the short term.

Keywords: chronic low back pain, lumbar fusion, sacroiliac joint pain, sacroiliac joint fusion, healthcare costs, decision modeling

Corrigendum for this paper has been published

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