Today, DISC of Louisiana is proud to announce Jeremy R. James, MD has received his board certification in Orthopaedic Surgery from The American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (ABOS). This is a major career milestone for any doctor—and it is exciting news for Northshore patients. ABOS board certification means DISC of Louisiana patients receive the highest level of medical care available.
What is Board Certification?
Aren’t all doctors board certified, you might wonder? Well, it would be great if that were the case, but the answer is no. Doctors must hold a medical license in order to practice. They earn this license after graduating from medical school and passing a written test. But a medical license isn’t the same as being board certified.
“A medical license is given to any doctor—it’s not specific to any specialty of medicine,” says Dr. James. “A board certification is specific to your field of practice. Every specialty, from internal medicine to OB-GYN, has a different test and requirements to become board certified.”
While it isn’t mandatory for doctors to be board certified, many hospitals require surgeons to be board eligible or board certified. And given the option to choose your surgeon, you should always opt for one who is board certified.
Why Board Certification is Important
If a doctor is board certified, it means other board certified physicians have examined their case history and agreed they are treating their patients with the highest level of care—care that has its foundation in evidence-based medicine.
To earn his board certification, Dr. James completed medical school at LSU Health Sciences Center, a combined Orthopaedic/Neurosurgery fellowship at the Spine Institute of Arizona, a year of practice, a written test, and an examination by his peers at the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (ABOS). The ABOS oversees all orthpaedic education and set the requirements for board certification.
Not only are these peers board certified, they’ve also completed ABOS re-certification—which means they’ve all been certified for more than 10 years. “I had to defend my surgical cases so my peers could confirm I’m treating patients—both non-operatively and operatively—within the highest standard of care for the conditions they have,” Dr. James says.
To maintain his board certification, Dr. James will attend one to two conferences a year, where he refreshes his knowledge and learns about the latest advances in spine care.
What Should Patients Avoid in Spine Care?
We are regularly seeing advertisements for clinics that tout “laser” procedures by board certified physicians. The truth is, advertising language can be deceptive. Due to the lack of high-quality studies regarding the application of laser technologies in spine surgery, board certified surgeons like Dr. James, warn patients to be wary.
“If you research the certifications of the people performing these ‘procedures,’ they have nothing to do with spine surgery,” Dr. James says. “The majority are not board certified surgeons. They may not even be spine surgeons at all—but interventional pain doctors.”
In fact, insurance won’t even cover laser spine surgery. “Insurance won’t pay for it because these clinics don’t follow evidence-based medicine,” Dr. James points out. “And they advertise on television—that should be the biggest red flag.”
South Louisiana’s Leaders in Board Certified Spine Care
After he finished his fellowship in 2014, Dr. James chose to move to the Northshore for several reasons. Not only did he love the fishing, boating, and family-oriented culture of the region, he was able to join K. Samer Shamieh, MD at DISC of Louisiana.
“Dr. Shamieh is not only one of the finest surgeons I know, he is also one of my best friends. So when it was time for me to choose where I wanted to practice, it was an easy decision,” he says. “We did the same spine fellowship in Scottsdale, Arizona, and he was a groomsman at my wedding.”
Today, Dr. James and Dr. Shamieh offer the highest level of evidence-based spine care. The minimally invasive procedures in which they specialize are the gold standard for the surgical treatment of spine conditions.
“In the right patients with the right pathology, I believe minimally invasive spine surgery provides much less post-operative pain, muscle trauma and bleeding, plus a quicker return to normal activity and function after surgery, when compared to traditional open spine surgery,” Dr. James says.
But don’t just take his word for it. Trust the group of board certified spine surgeons who tested Dr. James and found him up to their highest standards.
If you have questions about the minimally invasive spine procedures offered by DISC of Louisiana, please contact us to schedule an evaluation at one of our clinics across the south Louisiana region.
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