October 2nd, 2023

We are pleased to announce that OCRI’s spine research and CORE (Carolinas Opioid Reduction Effort) Project research teams are the recipients of a first place Cervical Spine Research Society (CSRS) award.

Opioid-free Analgesia is Safe and Effective in Anterior Cervical Spine Surgery: A Randomized Controlled Trial” was selected as the 1st Place Resident/Fellow Research Award by the CSRS Awards Committee.

In OCRI’s partnership with the Atrium Health Orthopedic Residency, Dr. Michael Schallmo, will be presenting OCRI’s research on opioid-free spine surgery.

The CORE Project is a clinical trial and series of publications that focuses on reducing avoidable opioid prescribing and consumption in elective orthopedic surgery.

“Opioid prescriptions are common in spine patients. Some studies have found that spine-related conditions are the single most common reason for an initial opioid prescription,” Dr. Schallmo said. “The CORE project addresses a growing unmet need in our field.”

The goal of this trailblazing research was to strategically find alternatives to opioids during and after surgery and disseminate findings to patients, providers, and healthcare systems in the Carolinas and beyond.

“Through research we know that minimizing opioid use following spine surgery is associated with improved patient satisfaction, better physical function, and decreased likelihood of opioid dependence,” Schallmo explains.

In addition to a monetary prize, Dr. Schallmo was invited to submit a full manuscript on the CORE Project abstract to CSRS’s journal, Clinical Spine Surgery, for publication in the May issue. He will also recognized in Las Vegas, Nevada on December 2 during CSRS’s 51st Annual Meeting.

Awards like this reiterate the timely, vital work happening at OCRI.

“Charlotte and the OrthoCarolina Spine Center have a long history of driving innovation in spine surgery and orthopedic surgery more broadly,” Dr. Schallmo reflects. “We are sincerely appreciative that the Cervical Spine Research Society has selected this study for special recognition. We are grateful for the opportunity to share our findings at a national venue with fellow peers and renowned experts in spine surgery. We look forward to continuing our meaningful work with the CORE project and other studies.”

Congratulations to all involved in this innovative work.

Learn more about the CORE Project