Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery in Edison, NJ
For anyone who has ever suffered from lower back pain, they’ll tell you the experience is something they’d wish on no one, especially in its severe form. Lower back pain can significantly lower a patient’s quality of life due to pain and discomfort.
Officially, the first response when you report lower back pain to your healthcare professional is for them to recommend conservative measures such as pain management medications or physical therapy. If these interventions fail to alleviate your back pain, you may need to undergo lumbar spinal fusion surgery as a last resort. The specialists at NJ Spine & Orthopedic can help treat your lumbar pain and get you the care you need.
What Is Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery?
The spine runs from the base of the skull down to the tailbone. The lumbar is the lower back segment of the spine. The lumbar spine has five vertebrae separated by spine disks, which aid the body to bend, twist, and flex. Lumbar spinal fusion surgery refers to various techniques surgeons use to connect two or more vertebrae in the lower region of the spine.
Patients with prolonged lower back or leg pain without apparent success with conservative treatment options are the best candidates for this type of surgery. Typically, spine surgeons recommend lower back spinal fusion surgery to patients who have:
Degenerative Disk Disease
This refers to normal herniation of the disk as age progresses or due to other spinal issues. When this happens, it causes the vertebrae to exert more pressure on the affected area and press on nerves, causing severe pain, numbness, and tingling. These symptoms make it difficult to bend and flex comfortably. If non-surgical interventions have failed, lumbar spinal fusion surgery may help relieve the discomfort and pain.
This is another age-related spine disease that causes the narrowing of the spinal canal in the lumbar region. The narrowing leads to extra pressure on the spinal cord and surrounding nerves, causing lower back pain and, in its severe form, difficulty controlling bowel and bladder movements.
Lumbar Spine Fracture
If one or more of your five lower back vertebrae fracture due to an injury, you’ll likely develop lower back pain. Having the injured lumbar spines fused through surgery may help reduce the pain.
How Does Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery Work?
A spine fusion generally involves removing the disk between the two affected vertebrae and fusing them using a bone graft. A synthetic bone graft may also be used where a natural bone graft isn’t available. The main goal of spinal fusion is to stop motion at the fused segment, which translates to less pressure and reduced wear and tear.
Depending on each patient’s specific condition, they may undergo a one- or two-level lumbar spinal fusion surgery. As the name suggests, one-level is when only one spine segment is connected, while two-level spinal fusion is when two lumbar spine segments undergo fusion in a single surgery operation.
During the procedure, our skilled spine surgeon will make a small incision in the region and move the nearby muscles to gain access to the affected spine. Once the area is securely accessed, the surgeon will remove the herniated disk and replace it with the bone graft. The purpose of the bone graft is to encourage natural bone growth after surgery for proper fusion. To adequately stabilize the segments, the spine surgeon will use titanium rods and screws to fuse (connect) the two adjacent vertebrae together.
Following a successful spinal fusion surgery, you may be able to go home after a few days. In the initial phase of recovery, you can expect mild pain in the area. But in most cases, your lower back pain should commence relieving within a few weeks and gradually progress until your vertebrae completely fuse with the bone graft several months later.
Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery Specialists in Edison, NJ
For most patients, a combination of pain management, physical therapy, and other conservative treatment options are enough to alleviate their lower back or leg pain. However, for some cases, lumbar spinal fusion surgery may be the only solution. If this latter person is you or someone you love, expert spine surgeons at NJ Spine & Orthopedic are willing to help you.
We take pride in being among the best in minimally-invasive techniques and other advanced spine surgery technology and innovation in Edison, New Jersey, and countrywide. Also, our Concierge Team can help you manage all aspects of your appointments and treatment to make sure everything is in line. Fill out our contact form or call us at (866) 553-0612 to get started.