Types of Spinal fusion surgery
Part of the spine – Spinal fusion can be performed at any location of the spine.
Lumbar fusion – Spinal fusions are an effective way to maintain movement and are able to reduce discomfort by relaxing the neural components, which can resolve the condition. This surgery includes the arrangement of a transplant structure inside the intervertebral space after surgery and the successful joining of two or more vertebrates.
Cervical fusion – Cervical fusion is a surgery to connect two or more backbones into a single structure. The main goal is to stop motion between the two bones and prevent back pain. When they fuse, they are less likely to move than before. This protects you from the stretching of nearby nerves, ligaments, and muscles that can cause pain.
Thoracic fusion – Thoracic fusion is a surgical approach in which a surgeon is capable of combining sections of the thoracic spine simultaneously. Traumatic fractures of the thoracic spine require this surgery. Some stitches or staples are required to aid the healing of the fracture. Scoliosis, kyphosis, or spinal instability are the most common disorders treated with this fusion.
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Multi-levels of spinal fusion
One-level spinal fusion – To inhibit movement at one level, two vertebrae must be attached simultaneously at the first level, e.g., L4 and L5.
Two-level spinal fusion – As a result, the second level prevents movement at two parts, L4 – L5 and L5 – S1, which form the connection between three vertebrae. The fusion of 2 or more spinal levels is not comparable to pain relief because it impedes normal movement and leaves pressure on the remaining joints.
Fusion of 3 or more levels – It is mostly performed for scoliosis or other disorders.
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Procedure of spinal fusion surgery
A total health examination and diagnostic tests were done before surgery. It includes a sequence of blood tests, ECG, X-ray, and scans. Few medications like blood thinners require it to be taken at least 2 weeks ahead of surgery. It is essential to abandon smoking as it reduces blood circulation and obstructs bone fusion.
Usually, the procedures included during surgery are the following:
- Cut – To approach the vertebrae for fusion, the surgeon cuts in one of three areas in your neck or back straightly above the spine, on one of two sides of the spine, or your stomach or throat so that your surgeon can approach the spine from the anterior side.
- Bone implant preparation – The implant merged two vertebrae simultaneously. It may come from either a bone bank or from your own body. It is generally taken from the abdomen. The surgeon used your bone by making a cut over your abdomen bone, removing a small part of it, and stitching the cut.
- Fusion of vertebrae – To join the vertebrae together for life, the surgeon places the bone implant material between the vertebrae. To heal the bone implants, metal plates, stitches, and staples are used to hold the vertebrae together.
In some cases, the surgeon uses synthetic material in place of bone implants. These synthetic materials help to promote bone growth and accelerate the joining of the vertebrae.
You will stay in the hospital for two to three days. It is primarily necessary after spinal fusion. You may experience some pain and tenderness after surgery. It depends on the area and size of your surgery. But this pain can be controlled with medications.