Many who have suffered from painful and debilitating tennis elbow have sought out multiple opinions and considered surgery treatment options. But how successful is this invasive and costly procedure? Is it unnecessary for many cases of tennis elbow?
Leading surgeon Ian Harris, a Sydney Orthopedic surgeon, reveals that he has performed numerous surgeries that were unsuccessful. He cites the widespread acceptance of the surgery, as well as avoidance of patient complaints, as primary motivations.
In a new book, Surgery, The Ultimate Placebo, Professor Harris has noted that the only benefits some surgeries provide is the ‘placebo effect’.
‘I have operated on people that didn’t have anything wrong with them in the first place,’ wrote Professor Harris.
‘This happens because if a patient complains enough to a surgeon, one of the easiest ways of satisfying them is to operate.
‘In my career, I have done surgery for ‘ununited’ fractures that have already healed, removed implants that were not causing a problem, fused sore backs and ‘scoped’ sore knees.
‘I have even re-operated on people with ineffective procedures after the first ineffective procedure was, well, ineffective’.
Read more: Daily Mail, ‘The easiest way to satisfy people is to operate’
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