When cervical vertebrae develop bone spurs, fusion surgery is not the only option

Patients suffering with chronic pain understand how pain can impact quality of life in areas such as work and daily activities. If you have been diagnosed with a spine condition, such as painful bone spurs, you might be searching for alternative treatment options to traditional open back fusion. You might feel relieved to know that there is a safer and effective alternative to traditional open back fusion.

Unfortunately, some physicians are quick to recommend traditional open back fusion to treat bone spurs. If patients do not research, they may make an important decision about their health care without being fully informed of all of their treatment options. The reality is that traditional open back fusion should only be used as a last resort treatment option due to its unpredictable high rate of complication and highly invasive nature, leading to an unnecessarily extended recovery time.

Fortunately, the minimally invasive stabilization surgery at Laser Spine Institute offers a safer, more effective alternative to traditional open back surgery. Patients who undergo our minimally invasive stabilization procedure to treat bone spurs will experience a shorter recovery time^ than patients who undergo traditional open back fusion.

Bone spurs

Also called osteophytes, these knobby bone growths often appear as a result of injury, inflammation or the onset of osteoarthritis, or arthritis of the spine. When these bone spurs develop on the vertebrae, they have the potential to protrude into the spinal canal and impact a nerve root, causing both local and radiating pain in the back and extremities.

You should consult your physician if you are experiencing chronic pain in the back and radiating pain in the extremities on one side of the body.

What is spine fusion?

Traditional open back spine fusion is performed in a hospital setting and requires about a two or three day postoperative stay in the hospital for patient monitoring. The surgery begins with a large incision down the back of the neck, cutting through the muscles in the neck surrounding the spine. This large incision creates more risk of infection and excessive blood loss, as well as extends the postoperative recovery time while the muscles rebuild.

Once the spine is accessed, the surgeon will remove the bone spurs and, depending on the amount of vertebrae removed in the process, will add an implant to fuse together the two surrounding vertebrae to stabilize the spine.

Alternative to traditional open spine fusion

If you have been recommended to seek surgical treatment for your cervical bone spurs, you should research all of the surgical options available to you. Many people with bone spurs do not need a surgical fusion surgery to treat the condition.

At Laser Spine Institute, we offer a safer, more effective alternative to traditional open back surgery. Our minimally invasive surgery is used to treat bone spurs as well as other common spine conditions. Patients with bone spurs can often find relief with minimally invasive decompression surgery, which removes just the bone spurs to decompress the impacted nerve in the spinal canal and leaves the rest of the spine untouched.

However, in the event that a patient has severe bone spurs, our surgeons might recommend our minimally invasive stabilization procedure. During this procedure, the vertebrae with the bone spurs is removed entirely to decompress the nerve in the spinal canal and help relieve your chronic pain. An implant is then inserted in the empty space in the spine to offer immediate stabilization.

Advantages of Laser Spine Institute's minimally invasive spine surgery:

  • No lengthy recovery^
  • Patient satisfaction score of 96^
  • Board-certified surgeons+
  • Less than 1-inch incision
  • Outpatient procedure
  • 97 out of 100 patient recommendation rate^

For more information about the types of minimally invasive procedures used to treat bone spurs, please contact our Care Team. We are here to help inform you of your treatment options so you can make the best decision about your spine care needs.

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