Should I get a second opinion?
When it comes to spine surgery, an accurate diagnosis is critical to getting the best treatment. That’s why doctors suggest getting a second opinion before almost all non-emergency spine procedures or major operations on the spine. If you are unsure or just wish to confirm your current course of treatment, a second opinion can help give you confidence that you are getting the most appropriate and conservative treatment available.
We at Second Opinion Spine believe that successful outcome in spine surgery depends upon:
- becoming educated regarding the nature of your spinal condition,
- understanding and clarifying expectations in advance of the surgery,
- taking into consideration your medical condition and lifestyle, and ultimately,
- performing the least invasive intervention possible.
What tests would enhance my second opinion?
Your second opinion will be based upon our ability to obtain an accurate history of your spinal condition in conjunction with our ability to review those imaging studies already obtained. While written reports of x-rays, MRI scans, and CT scans are helpful, a much more accurate assessment and a more refined surgical treatment plan may be rendered if we can review the actual imaging studies ourselves.
You will be offered the opportunity to send us your medical records and the disks containing your x-rays, MRI scans, and/or CT scans. If we feel that an additional imaging study would be critical to providing you with the best second opinion possible, we will recommend obtaining that particular study as part of our second opinion.
How does Second Opinion Spine select their doctors?
The spine surgeons providing you with your second opinion are considered to be leaders in their fields. They have joined our staff after having been trained in premier research hospitals including Massachusetts General Hospital, Yale New Haven Hospital, the Hospital for Special Surgery, and the Rothman Institute. Our surgeons have participated in multiple spine-related research studies and have published extensively in high impact spine-related journals. They remain actively engaged on several hospital boards, as well as physician quality oversight committees including peer review committees, Medical Affairs Committees, and hospital Quality Committees where they regularly contribute to ensuring that high quality and high value medical care is provided to their community.
How do I get a second opinion from Second Opinion Spine?
We’ve worked hard to make getting a second opinion with us as simple as possible. All you have to do is provide us with your contact information and a Second Opinion Spine Case Coordinator will contact you to ask questions regarding your particular case and to instruct you on how to forward your medical records and imaging data to us. Our surgeons will then review your records and will schedule a time to discuss their opinion with you one-on-one.
How much does a second opinion cost from Second Opinion Spine?
Expert review of your medical history and imaging data followed by a 30 minute personal discussion with one of our spine surgeons regarding your diagnosis and treatment options costs $450.
Additional 30 minutes of discussion during the initial telephone consultation, or during subsequent telephone calls (if requested by the client) is available for $250 for each additional 30 minutes.
A written summary of your spinal diagnosis and contemporary treatment options is available for $150.
Preliminary discussion with your concierge primary care physician to discuss the benefit of a second opinion for you is available at no cost.
The costs of the second opinion may be covered by your insurance; please check with your provider to see if this is the case. Some HMO or PPOs require an authorization to have a second opinion. Medicare does not cover second opinions for this service.
What if I am not fully satisfied with my second opinion?
Second Opinion Spine offers you a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you are not completely happy with your consultation, you can receive a full refund.
Will my spine surgeon be angry if I get a second opinion?
Getting a second opinion before proceeding with any spinal intervention is both a responsible and reasonable thing to do. In our spine surgery practice, we like to believe that our opinions are objective and made with the patient’s best interest at heart. To ensure that end result, and to provide our patients with confidence in our opinion, we believe that second opinions should be encouraged and we will often arrange for such a second opinion on behalf of our patients. If your treating surgeon shares this philosophy, he or she should understand your desire to obtain a second opinion.
With Second Opinion Spine, you can request a second opinion without letting your doctor know in most states.
Can I pay for Second Opinion Spine with my Medicare benefits?
We currently do not accept Medicare as a form of payment. Our service falls under CPT code 99499 and clients acknowledge this when they sign up for this service.
Can I pay for Second Opinion Spine with my health insurance?
We currently do not accept insurance as a form of payment, but your health insurance plan may cover Second Opinion Spine as an out-of-network provider. We can provide you with the materials that you may need to submit a request for reimbursement.
Is this service compliant with government privacy and information security regulations like HIPAA?
Yes, we meet all federal requirements for protecting personal health information (PHI) of patients under the Health Insurance Portability Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996. Our business practice is to only collect information we need at the time we need it. For example, we do not collect or store personal health information until after a patient decides to become a client of Second Opinion Spine.