Close to 40,000 costly spinal surgeries referred to as vertebroplasty are performed each year in the United States. However, shocking new research may change that number. Published in the prestigious The New England Journal of Medicine, a new study indicates that vertebroplasty is as effective as performing a fake surgery. Vertebroplasty is a surgical procedure where the surgeon injects a cement-like substance into a fractured vertebrae for the purpose of providing vertebral strength and reducing the associated pain. According to Rachelle Buchbinder of Monash University in Malvern, Australia, whose group found that 36 volunteers who received sham surgery did just as well as 35 who got the real operation, “We had hoped this treatment might get the pain better quicker, but we couldn’t demonstrate that… I don’t think there’s any place for vertebroplasty at the moment.” According to Dr. James Weinstein of Dartmouth Medical School in New Hampshire, “The results may change vertebroplasty from a procedure that is virtually always considered to be successful to one that is considered no better than placebo.” While it is not our intent to bash the medical profession, we feel the findings of this study and the comments of the physicians involved with this study are extremely newsworthy and should be made available to anyone considering spinal surgery.