Dr. Hamza Shaikh

Consultant- Spine Surgery

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Reviewed by

Dr. Hamza Shaikh

Consultant- Spine Surgery

Manipal Hospitals, Delhi

All About Spinal Fusion Surgery

Reviewed by:

Dr. Hamza Shaikh

Posted On: Mar 20, 2024

blogs read 5 Min Read

All About Spinal Fusion Surgery

Spinal fusion surgery is a procedure to join two or more adjacent vertebrae in your spine together. The vertebrae are the individual bones that stack on top of each other to form your spinal column, which runs down your back and protects your spinal cord. The discs between the vertebrae act as cushions and allow for some movement in your spine. However, if these discs become damaged or worn down, they can cause pain, instability, and other problems.

Spinal Fusion Surgery is recommended to address the Issues

  • Reducing Pain

By eliminating movement between the vertebrae, the surgery can help to reduce pain caused by instability, irritation of nerves, or pressure on the spinal cord.

  • Improving Stability

The surgery can help to stabilize the spine, which can be helpful for people with conditions such as scoliosis (curvature of the spine) or spondylolisthesis (slipped vertebra).

  • Correcting Deformity

In some cases, spinal fusion surgery can be used to correct a deformity in the spine such as scoliosis and kyphosis.

Spinal fusion surgery is not a right fit for everyone and is usually considered a last resort after other conservative treatments, such as physical therapy, medication, and injections, have failed to provide relief. It's important to discuss the spinal fusion surgery risks and benefits of this surgery with the best spine surgeons at the top spine surgery hospital in Delhi to determine if it's the right option for you.

How is Spinal Fusion Surgery Performed? 

Spinal fusion surgery is a complex spinal fusion surgery procedure that involves several steps, and the specifics can vary depending on the location of the affected vertebrae and the surgeon's preferred technique. Here's a general overview of the process:

1. Pre-operative Preparation:

  • You will undergo various tests like X-rays, MRIs, and blood tests to assess your overall health and the condition of your spine.

  • You will likely be advised to stop taking certain medications and may need to adjust your diet before the surgery.

  • You will discuss anesthesia options with your doctor and an informed consent form will be obtained.

2. Anesthesia and Positioning:

  • General anesthesia is typically used to put you to sleep during the surgery.

  • You will be positioned on the operating table either lying on your back (posterior approach) or your stomach (anterior approach), depending on the location of the vertebrae being fused.

3. Surgical Approach:

The surgeon will make an incision in the skin, either in the back (posterior approach) or front (anterior approach) of your body, to access the spine. In some cases, a minimally invasive approach using smaller incisions and specialized tools may be used.

4. Bone Grafting:

The surgeon will carefully remove all or part of the disc between the vertebrae being fused.

Bone graft material, which can be taken from your own body (autograft), from a donor (allograft), or be synthetic, will be placed in the empty space between the vertebrae to promote bone growth and fusion.

5. Spinal Hardware Placement:

In most cases, screws, rods, plates, or cages made of metal (Titanium) or other materials will be used to hold the vertebrae together and promote stability while the fusion heals. These implants are typically secured to the vertebrae with screws.

6. Closing the Incision:

The surgeon will carefully close the muscle layers and the skin with sutures or staples.

7. Post-operative care:

  • You will be monitored closely in the recovery room after surgery.

  • Pain medication will be administered to manage post-surgical discomfort.

  • Most of the patients can stand and walk by the next morning with good pain tolerance and can be sent home accordingly in 2 days.

  • The patient can resume light work or driving once the pain is tolerable, usually in a week to 10 days. Avoid bending and twisting and no strenuous activity including yard work, housework for the next 2-3 weeks.

Spinal fusion surgery is a major procedure that can help address chronic back pain, improve stability, and correct spinal deformity. However, it's crucial to weigh the risks and benefits carefully with the best spine surgeon in Delhi and explore all conservative treatment options before deciding if it's the right choice for you. If you have any questions or concerns, don't hesitate to consult our best spine care doctor in Delhi for the right medical advice and assistance. 

We also invite you to explore our official blog page to read the latest blogs shared by our doctors. Read blogs like Prevention of Spinal Cord Injury, scoliosis and more. 

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