Spinal Fusion Surgery is a surgical procedure that is done on the spine to stabilize the area between two vertebrae that is responsible for shock absorption. This involves fixing a bone graft in between the two vertebrae to normalize the vertebral movements. This surgery is only prescribed in the cases when the space between the two discs has reduced or the spine has become unstable. Unless there is not a need for the patient to undergo surgery, the doctors try and treat the condition with Physiotherapy and medicines.
The spine consists of small bones stacked on top of each other which are separated by some discs that have multiple roles such as shock absorption and cushioning. These discs sometimes get damaged due to injuries and spine diseases. There is a need to replace these discs with the artificial ones. This is where spinal fusion surgery comes into existence.
The bone graft or fusion implant is placed in between two vertebrae to fuse them. The implants are made of various materials including plastic, bone, or metal. This method is very useful in restoring proper alignment of the spine.
The Spinal fusion surgery can be performed by both traditional open spine way or minimally invasive way. The minimally invasive technique is mostly used because of its extreme advantages which include fewer infection chances, faster recovery and better results with less incision.
How does it work?
The Spinal Fusion Surgery involves the surgeon to make a small size incision at the back. A small tube is then inserted into the incision in order to dilate the muscles. This provides a better passage for the surgical instruments and the camera to go inside. Now the surgeon removes the desired discuss from the vertebrae and fixes and artificial one with utmost precision. The tube is then taken out and the incision is stitched back to as it was before.
The patient's heartbeat, blood pressure, and blood oxygen levels are constantly monitored all throughout the surgery. Local anesthesia or mild sedatives are given to help them relax. The surgery lasts for not more than two hours and the patient is released from the hospital in 24-48 hours.
There are side effects associated with every type of surgery, be it big or small. Hence there are some side effects associated with the Spinal Fusion Surgery as well. These include:
● Risk of infections in the operated area
● Attachment of a broken or wrong implant to the spine
● Recurring symptoms even after successful surgery
● Damage to the nerves causing numbness and inability to move
● Damage to the muscles and tendons
The patient is advised to go for a few tests for the preparation of the surgery. These tests include some full body exams such as MRI, CT scan, and Xrays. The doctor might also inquire about your family history of allergic reaction to anesthesia. He might also advise making some changes in the diets of patients. Smokers are told to quit smoking at least a month before the surgery.
What to expect after?
The surgery lasts for an hour and after that, the patient is usually kept under observation until the effect of sedatives wears out. If there are any complications, the patient will be kept under observations for a lot longer.
The recovery timing depends on how healthy a person is.This can vary from a week to three weeks. A person can resume his daily activities except for high-intensity workouts in a month. Physiotherapy is also a good option to increase the recovery speed.
The results of the Spinal Fusion Surgery are mostly positive and have been proven to treat the ailment completely. The recovery time is shorter and smaller incision makes it less painful and damaging to the muscles and tendons.
Spinal Fusion Surgery (PLIF/TLIF)
Surgeons in India specialize in Spinal Fusion Surgery. Hospitals are equipped with OT that are compatible with instrumental surgery. Spine surgery in India as usual. Post surgery hospital stay is for 3-5 days due to small incision and bloodless surgery. The cost of spine surgery is in range of USD 4000-6000, excluding the cost of the implant.
Treatment Possible for patients needing Spinal Fusion Surgery (PLIF/TLIF)
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