Lumbar Spinal Fusion in Florida

Spinal Fusion

The spine is comprised of small, interconnected bones known as vertebrae, and when a patient either injures their vertebrae or suffers a condition that affects their vertebrae, they may require surgical intervention to move forward with their lives. With most back pain issues, doctors prefer to take a conservative approach by working through non-invasive methods such as physical therapy, steroid injections, and medication. But if these fail, the next step is to consider the variety of surgical options available and identify the most appropriate solution for the unique situation at hand. One of the most common types of spinal surgeries is a spinal fusion.

Depending on factors such as the cause of the pain, the location of the impacted vertebrae, and the number of vertebrae involved in the surgery, there are a number of different ways that a surgeon may perform this procedure. For pain in the lower back, the procedure is known as a posterior lumbar interbody fusion, or PLIF

The Basics of Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion

This procedure is reserved for people with chronic and severe back pain where physical therapy and medication treatments have proven unsuccessful. As with any invasive surgery, it is important for a patient and their doctor to work together through all possible options in order to maximize the chances of a successful outcome while minimizing risks. PLIF is not the only fusion surgery available for people who are suffering from lower back pain, so consult with your doctor about which surgery is right for your unique condition. 

This surgery involves removing the affected disc (or discs) before inserting a cage with graft material into the space between the vertebrae. During the recovery process, bone will grow over this cage and ultimately fuse the vertebrae together in order to restore the stability in the area that the removed disc once provided. 

Common Conditions Treated With Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion

Some of the most common conditions that are treated with PLIF include degenerative disc disease, herniated discs, spinal fractures, stenosis (narrowing of the spine), scoliosis, and spondylolisthesis. But suffering from any of these conditions does not mean that you will require PLIF, nor are these the only conditions that may qualify you for this surgery. 

Risks of Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion

As with any surgery, there are risks associated with this procedure that an experienced surgeon will work diligently to minimize. However, you may face complications such as nerve damage, loss of blood or spinal fluid, clotting, infection, or allergic reaction. And there is always a risk of fractures during the recovery process. 

Working closely with your doctor during your recovery and following your care plan will help to minimize risks of infection, fracturing, or other complications. It is important that you take the necessary time to recover and allow the grafted area to heal sufficiently to avoid disrupting the new bone growth. 1-800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service that can connect you with an experienced and certified professional in your area.