Are you considering a lumbar fusion procedure for your back problem? If your insurance carrier is Blue Cross of Idaho you have some very strict criteria to meet before you are able to consider having a lumbar fusion. A link to the description of these criteria at the Blue Cross of Idaho website is provided. These guidelines are those of Blue Cross of Idaho and may or may not be viewed as standard criteria for lumbar fusion by your physician or by spine organizations whose members include anesthesiologists, chiropractors, physical therapists, orthopedic spine surgeons, neurosurgeons, physiatrists, and pain anesthesiologists http://bit.ly/12bpAk1 . The criteria are not insurmountable, however, they do pose significant hurdles you will need to overcome before you may consider lumbar fusion surgery. Please be patient with your physician/surgeon who may be recommending the procedure as he/she generally does not have anything to do with the guidelines. The Blue Cross of Idaho Prior-authorization Guidelines are a component of the health insurance policy that you purchased from Blue Cross of Idaho. According to their website the next revision of these guidelines is 06/2014.
The study concluded that the patients undergoing minimally invasive techniques demonstrated less need for transfusion during the perioperative time, less blood loss and a shorter hospital stay than patients undergoing open surgery.