Many clients grapple with this question – which is the best doctor to see for spine health? At Beverly Hills Spine Surgery, we don’t make you choose. We strongly believe both doctors should be involved in your spine health and treatment decisions. Each professional brings unique experience and a special perspective to your condition—and involving both gives you the best chance of recovery. Both types of surgeons are qualified to perform surgery on the spine and we prefer both professionals collaborate to treat your condition. Here’s why.

What’s the difference between a neurosurgeon and an orthopedic surgeon?

Neurosurgeons are specialized in their knowledge of nerves, the spinal cord and brain. Up until about 25 years ago, neurosurgeons typically performed surgery on the spine. Ironically, many people think of neurosurgeons as brain doctors—but they mostly operate on the spinal cord. And there are a few procedures where a neurosurgeon would most definitely operate on versus an orthopedic surgeon. Spinal cord tumors, spina bifida and nerve root tumors are all examples of this

It’s important to note that both neurosurgeons and orthopedic surgeons are considered equally qualified to treat a host of spine conditions, though they are technically different specialties. Orthopedic surgeons specialize in bones – fractures, joint repair and replacement, really any injury directly to a bone. Orthopedic surgeons often have more training on spine deformity (such as scoliosis and kyphosis).

And this is where they overlap: the spine is a complex, extraordinary body part! The spine consists of the spinal cord, bones, ligaments, joints and nerves—it’s a total overlap of both medical disciplines.

A collaborative approach

At Beverly Hills Spine Surgery, we collaborate and consult with one another on each and every case. You get the best of both medical specialties! We’re able to evaluate your condition and needs with a 360 degree view to determine the most precise approach for treatment, and evaluate the full impact on both bone (orthopedic surgeon) and nerves (neurosurgeon). This gives you the best chance of success, quality of life, and comfort.

No matter which doctor you visit regularly, we always have the other professional assisting and providing their perspective.

Dealing with back problems? Contact us, we can help.