Preoperative Education for Patients Undergoing Spine Surgery
Low back pain is a worldwide health problem. Preoperative education is essential to provide patients with information across the continuum of care. Gaps exist among healthcare organizations regarding deficiencies in properly educating patients about their surgical experience. The lack of proper preoperative education can negatively impact reimbursement for healthcare systems, providers, and patient outcomes. In a large metropolitan tertiary care center providing spine surgery, an evidence-based project was implemented. A self-developed pre and post intervention surveys was given assessing patients’ knowledge and surgical expectations after surgery. A tri-fold education pamphlet was given to the participants with information that included detailed information regarding expectations before and after surgery.
Descriptive statistics were used to describe the sample and outcome variable. An increase in knowledge in expectations after surgery was noted from pre-intervention (mean 1.83, SD .408) to post-intervention (mean 1.67, SD .816) with a Cohen’s D of 0.248 although this was not statistically significant. However, the change in average length of stay (LOS) was significant. The average LOS for the project participants dropped from 4.54 days to 2.833 days which is within the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) guidelines of 2.92 days for this surgical population. In conclusion, an increased in patients’ knowledge regarding expectations following surgery and decreased LOS was seen for the project participants.