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Laser Spine Institute / You Are Just a Dollar Sign

1 United States Review updated:

I have read many complaints about Laser Spine Institute all over the internet and agree with all the various complaints. I am a former employee of Laser Spine Institute. No, I am not sour grapes. I am very educated and well respected in the medical field.

I have worked for a very long time in the medical field in real surgeon's offices before going to work for LSI. I was not prepared for what Laser Spine Institute really is. I strongly believe that this is a company that is NOT about helping patients get their life back. I strongly believe that this is a company that is about selling as many surgeries as possible. My job was to call people that submitted a request for information about the laser surgery. Really, my job was to call and hound people about getting the surgery. My job was to push the potential patient to sign up. If LSI got a last minute cancellation for surgery they would scramble to find another patient to fill the spot. They did not like losing the money from that time slot.

The folks that have blogged that after their surgery they could not get call backs from Laser Spine Institute is also valid. I dealt with many complaints from people that had issues after surgery and could not get anyone to call them back.

I felt like a used car salesperson. Laser Spine Institute actually has a sales department. In my long career in medicine I have never worked in ANY medical facility that had a sales department. I despised my job. I am now unemployed which I would prefer to trying to sell people a surgery. I did not have the stomach to push and push a person into having such a major surgery. When I was let go I was told, among other things, that my sales were not high enough. I am a legitimate medical professional and would have to say that I took that as a compliment! Oh well, at least I can sleep at night.

Do your homework they only have one real spine surgeon. Do you want someone operating on your spine that hasn't had specialized training in spine surgery? IT IS A SCAM. THEIR DAYS ARE NUMBERED!

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  • St
      27th of Apr, 2010
    +1 Votes

    This is extremely important!

    Talk about the scam "du jour" this has got to be it!
    This is in response to the individual who had the misfortune of being an employee of these scam artists, it is hard to believe that this C.E.O. Bill Horne has the chutzpuh to even disclose his name or show his picture related to this so called "Institute". His picture would be better suited plastered on the F.B.I.'s 10 most wanted list.

    My complaint is from the perspective not as a former employee of this outfit of theives but of a perspective client.
    I am a 58 year old male who was diagnosed with a spinal arthritic condition called "ankylosing spondylitis" when I was 15 years old.
    Based on that background information, I came across an ad for LSI and decided to make an initial call to find out more about them.

    I received a call back from a woman in Tampa, Florida who was so ill informed that it immediately made me suspicious that she could not answer what I felt were very legitimate questions regarding where to go and what was needed and why it was so important to have a M.R.I. done first and how one would be ordered and who would pay etc. She sounded very uncomfortable and unsure of herself and pushed me onto a quote "patient coordinator" who in turn could answer all of my questions.

    This individual was hesitant to even provide me with the local office of LSI to where I live and when I asked for their telephone #, told me that all calls get routed thru Florida???

    I then confronted him with a test to confirm my suspicions of this operation being a scam.

    I asked him if he was familiar with my condition since LSI's ad said that spinal arthritis is something that they can help with.
    I asked him if he was familiar with my condition "ankylosing spondylitis" and he said yes which was a LIE!!!
    I asked him to tell me what that condition is and his answer was quote "a slippage of the spine" WRONG ANSWER!!

    He obviously had no clue. This organization, and I use that term lightly, should be vigorously investigated by the authorities on a state and federal level asap and hopefully squashed out of the business of scamming honest individuals who suffer from back issues.

    They are the lowest form of "human being" who for monetary reasons only prey upon others!!

    Like the woman who used to be an employee said, Do your homework first, and save yourself the aggravation.
    I wholeheartedly agree!!!

    Wayne, Pa.

  • Sl
      21st of Jun, 2010
    +1 Votes

    They robbed me Time and money... And I want it back...

  • Al
      22nd of Aug, 2010
    +1 Votes

    Call me Alan berkov 813-633-7109

  • Al
      22nd of Aug, 2010
    +1 Votes

    MY wife has surgery in 2008

    RIPOFF 813-633-7109

  • Gf
      30th of Aug, 2010
    +1 Votes

    I am sorry to hear about everyones experiences and i am just reading up on this stuff becaues for once i am actually considering surgery. I was told at least 18 yrs ago i needed to have spinal fusion. I said i would not ever get surgery until i was on the floor and could not get up, until i found LSI. Now having said that i am just looking into this surgery and trying to find information about it.I did go to a seminar they have located in Wayne PA and they where very knowledgable from what i have seen. I have not made up my mind yet but with your complaints i now know i have to look into this alot further

  • No
      5th of Oct, 2010
    +1 Votes

    the company itself is a scam. yes they have "doctors" but the doctors do not go to a fellowship to be certified spine surgeon. they do their training for the procedure by dr. st louis himself, at the tampa facility. they just opened the facility in PA.

    they have beautiful offices, nice decor, breakfast and lunch provided for the patients - big deal.

    please do your homework, please know that it is a numbers game. the big wigs all bonus when they hit the magical monthly number.

    you see a doctor, he gives you his opinion and then you are led to the "patient coordinator". that is where the number game begins. this is where the patient coordinator gives you their price of a whopping $30k, because after you add in the surgery center, anesthesia, doctors fee, nursing staff, supplies, bandages, blah blah they actually bill out over $60-$80 to the insurance. So your $30k pays them and they still collect from the insurance.

    patients after surgery could experience problems, and they are given an 800 number to call, which is routed to the "tampa" office. and most of the time you dont' get a prompt call back, that is why they tell you to go to the emergency room if you are not feeling right.

    the doctor who did your surgery, you won't even see him at the post operative appointment. you see a nurse if you are lucky, otherwise you see the MA.

    they have you sign the longest form ever indicating if you get money from your insurance, that you will sign it over to them and not keep it.

    none of the doctors are board certified. as a matter of fact, this procedure that they do, is involved in a lawsuit in florida, because dr. st louis, stole the idea from his former employer who was a real spine surgeon. that should tell you something.

    good luck and read, read read. there are far better choices for care, that actually do care.

  • Wi
      11th of Mar, 2012
    +1 Votes

    I also had surgery there in Nov 07. What a rip off. This place is truly a joke. Needless to say the operation was a complete failure. Had to put up 30k and was assured that my ins would completely reimburse the 30k. After over two years of fighting with ins received only 6k. When I asked them about their assurance they basically said tough luck. The 30k was my retirement fund and informed them of this prior to my deposit. Bloomberg news recently did a story on them and hopefully will help expose them for what they are. You can go to their website to read the story, its a real eye opener. I hope anyone that reads this will take my advice and stay far away from this place. I now understand why there are hundreds of complaints on this and other sites conerning them.

  • Un
      4th of Jun, 2012
    +1 Votes

    I have irreversible damage from their surgeries. I have nothing more to say.

  • Sc
      9th of Jun, 2012
    +1 Votes

    I agree with the other complaints. They shipped me the wrong parts and I tried to contact them many times by email with no success. No phone and no address RIP OFF!

  • Ls
      22nd of Feb, 2013
    +1 Votes

    All of these claims are ### my wife had surgery with lsi and is cured now her neck pain is gone. I too read these blogs and comments before her surgery and almost stopped her from going to Tampa but I was smart enough to ask myself if the were all bad they would be out of business by now. I believe those on this page are the few and far between who didn't find relief at lsi. Trust me take the chance. You will see how many patients get wheeled in and walk out, just seeing this before my wife went in the OR made us know we were in the right place. They have performed over 30, 000 surgeries with 90% success so sorry for the ten percent but why don't you go ask your local surgeon what success chance you are looking at. The truth is its about 50 50 chance with fusion that's what my wife was offered... Thank you Laser Spine Institute you gav me my wife back!

  • Ma
      25th of Feb, 2013
    +1 Votes

    AVOID For-profit clinics for a quick fix for your back. I wish I did. I went to Laser Spine Institute to have surgery. They offered to cut their regular cash price from $30, 000 to only $5, 000 cash, but it was no bargain. I am now on disability and in unspeakable pain. When my surgeon, Dr. Craig Wolff. did not return to work after my surgery, I did some checking. Turns out, he was arrested for DUI. At the trial, the LSI surgeon pleaded "no contest" to the charges. his earlier DUI was later reduced to a "Reckless Driving" charge, so he was unable to hide the second DUI charge. The state of Arizona learned about Dr. Wolff's DUI troubles and made him surrender his medical license in Arizona. You can google "Craig Wolff" and "Arizona medical board" to see for yourself.

    Even worse, LSI works hard to remove posts from it's real patients like me and they reportedly pay people to post positive bogus reviews to "bury" the truth about this company that preys upon people desperate for help.

    AVOID Laser Spine Institute; go to a real hospital and get a real neurosurgeon.

  • Fo
      23rd of Jan, 2014
    +1 Votes

    - LSI has established a very efficient production line. Day 1 consists of MRI and CT scans. Day 2 consists of meeting with a doctor, not your surgeon because LSI deems their surgeon’s time too important to waste on the patients. The doctor reviewing my MRI was board certified in physical medicine. My surgery was performed on by Dr. Wolff, whose patient approval rating according to some web sites maxes at 54%. His surgery on my back (L4/5) on 31 January of 2013 resulted in an herniated disk, which I had to have a real neurosurgeon repair. LSI's post op care support is atrocious...I suffered terribly for five weeks after the LSI surgery. Dr. Wolff never spoke to me again after the surgery and his nurse only twice in four weeks despite my many calls to them asking for their help...asking for an MRI to see what was going on. LSI will have successes...maybe as high as 75%. But can you take the risk of failure? Get a real neurosurgeon, someone who will speak to you before and after the surgery! This is now a year later and I still cannot walk properly.

  • Li
      23rd of Feb, 2018
    0 Votes

    I have spondyolisthesis and was told I need surgery. I phoned LSI this morning to determine if they would be an option for me. I wanted to know about insurance; how many trips I'd have to make to Phoenix (I'm from Alaska. It's expensive to fly down there and then add hotel, meals, transportation, etc.); what I can expect; etc. The woman I spoke with asked for my name first. I told her that wasn't important right now, I'm basically interviewing them to determine if they are an option. She then asked for my phone number. When I asked why she needed that, she hung up on me. I felt they would begin a hard-sell pressure campaign to get me into their facility. If hanging up on potential patients with legitimate questions is an example of their customer service and patient care, I want no part of it. They are not an option for me.

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