Author(s): Calderone RR, Garland DE, Capen DA, Oster H
The movement towards managed care has raised the awareness of health care costs in today's society. The additional expense involved in treating patients with deep postoperative spinal infections after lower back fusion increases the total cost of care more than four times. Three areas of greatest increase in cost are room and board, pharmacy and laboratory charges. Decreasing the expense of this complication can best be effected through use of home nursing care, choice, and duration of antibiotic treatment and prudent laboratory testing.