Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery in Paramus, NJ
Lumbar spinal fusion is a surgery performed to help stabilize a patient’s spine and alleviate chronic back pain by fusing the L4 and L5 vertebrae in the lower back (lumbar spine). The medical procedure involves removing the disc between the vertebrae and placing a bone graft or a synthetic material in its place for bone growth stimulation and fusion.
Lumbar spinal fusion surgery in Paramus, NJ is recommended when disorders like herniated discs, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis, or spondylolisthesis haven’t responded to conventional interventions. Here’s what you need to know about Paramus lumbar spinal fusion surgery and how a spine specialist at NJ Spine and Orthopedic in Paramus, NJ, can help.
Why May Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery Be Needed?
Degenerative disc disease, caused by wear of the discs between two or more vertebrae in the lower back over time, can call for lumbar spinal fusion surgery in Paramus. The procedure is also performed on patients with spinal stenosis brought about by a spinal canal narrowing that compresses the spinal cord and nerves.
Spondylolisthesis is a condition that can benefit from this surgery because when one vertebra in the spine slips out of place, it leads to excruciating pain. The decision to undergo lumbar spinal fusion surgery is typically made when physical therapy and pain medication fail to provide relief. Signs that may indicate the need for the procedure include:
- Leg weakness
- Difficulty standing or walking
- Numbness or tingling in the legs or feet
- Chronic back pain that does not respond to various treatments including chiropractic care, epidural steroid injections, and physical therapy.
These symptoms can negatively impact a person’s ability to do everyday tasks, making this surgical intervention a viable option for patients seeking relief from chronic back pain.
What to Expect Before Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgery in Paramus, NJ
Lumbar spinal fusion surgery is a complex procedure requiring comprehensive evaluation and preparation. Patients undergo a thorough pain assessment, including diagnostic imaging tests such as X-rays and MRIs, to ensure they qualify and are well-prepared for the minimally invasive technique. They also receive detailed preoperative instructions and preparations to ensure a safe and successful procedure.
Surgery evaluation for lumbar spinal fusion surgery typically includes performing a medical history and physical examination by a nurse practitioner to aid spine specialists in determining a patient’s overall health. X-ray tests are employed to show changes in the alignment and structure of the spine, while MRIs can give detailed images of the soft tissues and nerves in the lower back region.
Before a lumbar spinal fusion procedure, patients receive detailed preoperative instructions from their doctor or surgeon. For example, they need to stop taking medications that can increase the risk of bleeding during surgery, like aspirin or blood thinners like warfarin. Individuals who smoke are instructed to quit before surgery, as the habit delays healing and increases the risk of complications. Patients must also prepare their homes by modifying their living space to accommodate mobility limitations and arranging for someone to assist with self-care or daily tasks.
The Paramus Lumbar Spinal Fusion Surgical Procedure
If nonsurgical treatments do not improve your low back pain and related symptoms and other underlying causes have been ruled out, you may be considered for lumbar spinal fusion surgery. Before lumbar spinal fusion surgery, the patient is given either general anesthesia (puts them to sleep) or regional anesthesia (numbs the lower body). The surgical team positions them face down on the operating table, and a neurosurgeon makes an incision in the back to access the spine.
Any damaged or diseased tissue, for example, a herniated disc, is excised. The vertebrae are fused using bone grafts or synthetic bone material, metal rods or screws to hold the vertebrae together, or cages to support the fusion. Once the fusion procedure is complete, the surgeon sutures or staples the incision and covers the area with a bandage. The patient remains in the recovery bay for a couple of hours to be closely monitored as they wake up from general anesthesia. Depending on the surgery extent, patients must avoid strenuous activity for several weeks or months to promote healing.
Note, a spine fusion surgery patient takes 3 to 12 months to resume most normal activities safely. The success rate with pain relief ranges between 70% and 90%, based on the treated condition. Potential complications of lumbar spinal fusion surgery in Paramus may include blood loss, wound infection, nerve damage, and the fusion failing to heal properly. To reduce these risks, patients must adhere to post- and pre-surgery instructions, quit smoking, and maintain a healthy weight. Postoperative check-ups can also aid in detecting and managing any complications that may arise.
Consult Our Skilled Spine Specialists at NJ Spine & Orthopedic in Paramus, NJ
If you have been dealing with back pain and need surgical treatment, a lumbar spinal fusion surgery may be the best option for you and your symptoms.
Our skilled spine specialists at NJ Spine & Orthopedic in Paramus, NJ can help individuals considering lumbar spinal fusion surgery, as we have extensive experience in diagnosing and treating spinal disorders. We’ll evaluate your condition and offer expert advice on the ideal treatment option that suits your needs. We also will employ advanced surgical techniques and plan an effective postoperative program to help you recover quickly and safely. Please call us at (866) 553-0612 or submit our online contact form to book an appointment today.