Anterior / Posterial Fusion

Anterior/posterial fusion is a surgical procedure that fuses the front and back of two or more vertebrae. The purpose of this surgery is to relieve symptoms produced by a compressed nerve root in the spinal column.

Overview of an anterior / posterial fusion procedure

Anterior/posterial fusion is typically for patients who experience extreme spinal instability or for some patients who have undergone unsuccessful spinal fusion surgery in the past.

This procedure requires incisions in both the abdomen and the back. In a sense, it is two operations in one. Generally, damaged or diseased spinal disc material is easier to access from the anterior, or front, of the spine, so an incision in the front is made first.

Once the disc material is removed and an interbody spacer is inserted, a bone graft is implanted on the front of the spine. Then, an incision is made in the posterior, or rear, and a bone graft is implanted on the spine using metal screws and rods. Complete recovery can take up to a year and potentially longer.

Spinal conditions that can be treated with an anterior/posterior fusion include:

• Degenerative disc disease
• Spinal stenosis
• Spondylolisthesis
• Osteoarthritis
Facet disease
• Herniated disc

Minimally invasive alternatives

Many patients find that the symptoms associated with these and other spinal conditions can be treated effectively using physical therapy, exercise or pain medications. Traditional open back surgery, including anterior/posterior fusion, usually is not suggested by a physician until weeks or months of conservative treatment have proven ineffective.

If surgery is a consideration, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn about minimally invasive alternatives to anterior/posterior fusion or other traditional spinal fusion procedures. The surgeons at Laser Spine Institute can perform minimally invasive stabilization surgery as an outpatient procedure that requires far less recovery time^ and less risk than traditional open back surgery.

These procedures use state-of-the-art technology that allows for smaller, muscle-sparing incisions. We can also perform minimally invasive decompression procedures in cases where deterioration is less severe and full disc removal is not required.

Contact Laser Spine Institute for a no-cost MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our minimally invasive procedures.