Minimally invasive decompression and fusion surgery is a procedure that treats conditions causing destabilization of the spine. At IGEA Brain, Spine & Orthopedics, we help patients in New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut find relief from such conditions by offering this type of spinal surgery, which is designed to shorten recovery times and protect surrounding tissues. We rely on the most recent advancements and state-of-the-art technology to meet patients’ needs – without the need for extensive incisions.
What Is Minimally Invasive Decompression and Fusion Surgery?
Minimally invasive decompression and fusion surgery uses bone grafts to encourage spinal vertebrae to fuse together. This type of surgery causes minimal disruption to surrounding soft tissues, allowing patients to experience a shorter recovery time and preserve the healthy areas of their spine. This procedure follows these steps:
- 1. The surgeon makes an incision to reach the spine.
- 2. A tubular contractor tool is applied to safely hold muscles aside.
- 3. The bony spine covering, or lamina, and disc material are removed and replaced with bone graft. Screws and rods may also be placed to strengthen the area.
- 4. The tubular contractor tool is removed.
- 5. Any small incisions are stitched up and bandaged.
Types of Minimally Invasive Decompression and Fusion
This category of spinal surgery contains several subtypes, each of which are defined by the approach used to reach the spine. These different approaches include:
Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (PLIF)
In this procedure, a surgeon reaches the spine through a small incision in the midline of the back. It comes with the advantage of only needing one incision, but this approach limits the amount of lamina and disc material that can be removed, as well as bone graft placed.
Direct Lateral Interbody Fusion (DLIF)
DLIF is also known as extreme lateral interbody fusion (XLIF) or lateral lumbar interbody fusion (LLIF). The surgeon performs this procedure through multiple incisions on the side of the body between the ribs and hip. It limits blood loss damage to the tissue, making it one of the least invasive types available.
Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF)
In an ALIF procedure, the surgeon reaches the spine through an incision on the lower abdomen. This gives the surgeon access to the front of the spine for more extensive grafting and avoids trauma to lower back muscles.
Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion (TLIF)
TLIF is a procedure done through an incision in the back and is used to fuse the anterior (front) and posterior (back) spinal columns. TLIF removes the minimal amount of bone structure when accessing the disc area, which limits the extent of treatment possible but reduces the length of recovery.
Oblique Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion (OLLIF)
With OLLIF, the spine is accessed through a small space on the side of the spine known as Kambin’s triangle. The natural gap allows free access to the disc. As a result, no bone needs to be removed, reducing recovery time and leading to more effective healing.
Who Can Benefit?
Minimally invasive decompression and fusion surgery is designed to treat spinal conditions that destabilize the structure. This includes conditions such as:
- Spinal damage
- Degenerative disc disease (DDD)
- Herniated discs
- Spinal stenosis
If your doctor tells you that you may have one of these conditions, then minimally invasive decompression and fusion surgery may be right for you.
Trust IGEA Brain, Spine & Orthopedics
If you are in need of spinal surgery, trust our surgeons at IGEA Brain, Spine & Orthopedics. They are extensively trained in the use of cutting-edge technology to effectively treat spinal disorders and diseases with minimally invasive decompression and fusion procedures. To learn more about how we serve patients in the tri-state area, contact us today.