South Carolina Spine Center uses written protocols that emphasize non-surgical treatment options in advance of spine surgery. The Prizm spine outcomes system is the only spine outcomes system that measures and tracks a variety of metrics that document the severity of the patient entering the spine center and compares that to the results after treatment.
New patients coming into South Carolina Spine Center complete an intake form that measures their pain level, severity of symptoms and functional status. Three months after their first visit, an outside nurse, not employed by South Carolina Spine Center, calls a random sample of patients and interviews them for functional status, symptoms and patient satisfaction. This is the most unbiased method for outcomes analysis. The clinical outcomes presented here are analyzed and validated by an outside firm, Prizm Development, Inc., that specializes in tracking spine outcomes nationally, and is the most experienced entity in the nation related to spine specialty centers.
A key part of spine care is to prevent re-injury and a future back strain. As part of their care at South Carolina Spine Center, patients are provided a Home Remedy Book with stretches that relieve symptoms at home and symptom charts that reveal emergency symptoms that need to be seen by a physician in 48 hours to prevent permanent paralysis of muscles and nerves. Those patients who receive spine-specialized physical therapy at South Carolina Spine Center are give a customized Home Exercise Program specific to their diagnosis and spine problem. The educational book also shows ways to lift objects correctly to prevent a future strain. This emphasis on prevention, enables the person to make their back stronger, more flexible and more resistant to future strain. This is the secret to long term freedom from back or neck pain.
Quality is a journey, however, rather than a destination, and we are committed to continually improving.
As a regional referral for back and neck pain, South Carolina Spine Center receives a far more complex patient base than other clinics. About one in three new patients (37%) walking in the front door of South Carolina Spine Center have had previous back surgery at other clinics. Another 70% of patients have red flag symptoms like radicular pain, 63% have numbness into a leg or arm, both of which implies disc-related problems, rather than simple acute back or neck strain. About 3 of 4 patients (75%) had back pain for 4 months or more. This severity of new patients presents a challenge for a spine center.
Even benchmarking South Carolina Spine Center to other spine centers (as shown in image below) shows that it receives as new patients far more complex backs than even other large spine centers. The benchmark chart shows that 37% of new patients coming to South Carolina Spine Center had previous back surgery. This failed back percentage is much higher than other spine centers which average about 25% for failed back surgery patients.