Contemporary Trends in Minimally Invasive Sacroiliac Joint Fusion Utilization in the Medicare Population by Specialty. Neurosurgery Hersh, A. M., Jimenez, A. E., Pellot, K. I., Gong, J. H., Jiang, K., Khalifeh, J. M., Ahmed, A. K., Raad, M., Veeravagu, A., Ratliff, J. K., Jain, A., Lubelski, D., Bydon, A., Witham, T. F., Theodore, N., Azad, T. D. 2023


Sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction constitutes a leading cause of pain and disability. Although surgical arthrodesis is traditionally performed under open approaches, the past decade has seen a rise in minimally invasive surgical (MIS) techniques and new federally approved devices for MIS approaches. In addition to neurosurgeons and orthopedic surgeons, proceduralists from nonsurgical specialties are performing MIS procedures for SI pathology. Here, we analyze trends in SI joint fusions performed by different provider groups, along with trends in the charges billed and reimbursement provided by Medicare.We review yearly Physician/Supplier Procedure Summary data from 2015 to 2020 from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for all SI joint fusions. Patients were stratified as undergoing MIS or open procedures. Utilization was adjusted per million Medicare beneficiaries and weighted averages for charges and reimbursements were calculated, controlling for inflation. Reimbursement-to-charge (RCR) ratios were calculated, reflecting the proportion of provider billed amounts reimbursed by Medicare.A total of 12?978 SI joint fusion procedures were performed, with the majority (76.5%) being MIS procedures. Most MIS procedures were performed by nonsurgical specialists (52.1%) while most open fusions were performed by spine surgeons (71%). Rapid growth in MIS procedures was noted for all specialty categories, along with an increased number of procedures offered in the outpatient setting and ambulatory surgical centers. The overall RCR increased over time and was ultimately similar between spine surgeons (RCR = 0.26) and nonsurgeon specialists (RCR = 0.27) performing MIS procedures.Substantial growth in MIS procedures for SI pathology has occurred in recent years in the Medicare population. This growth can largely be attributed to adoption by nonsurgical specialists, whose reimbursement and RCR increased for MIS procedures. Future studies are warranted to better understand the impact of these trends on patient outcomes and costs.

View details for DOI 10.1227/neu.0000000000002564

View details for PubMedID 37306413