Spinal fusion treatment — what are the alternatives?

Patients diagnosed with spine conditions are typically recommended to try conservative therapies as a first method of treatment. People often respond well to options such as chiropractic care, physical therapy, massage and medication. The purpose of these treatments is to relieve the pain and symptoms associated with the spine condition while also taking pressure off the spine and improving mobility.

Considering options for spinal fusion treatment

However, some more severe spine conditions may not respond well to conservative therapies. If you are dealing with debilitating symptoms and have sought conservative treatment for more than three months with little to no lasting pain relief, you should consult your doctor about next steps. He or she may recommend that you undergo spinal surgery, including a fusion, to effectively treat your condition if it is not responding to conservative treatments.

Being faced with a decision about spine surgery or spinal fusion can be overwhelming. There are several risks with traditional open back fusion that should be weighed against the possible benefits of the surgery. As you make this important decision, it is important to be aware of the full range of options available to you, including surgical procedures that can take a less invasive approach.

An outpatient alternative to traditional open back fusion

At Laser Spine Institute, our highly-skilled surgeons provide an outpatient alternative to traditional open back fusion. Our minimally invasive stabilization surgery uses muscle-sparing techniques that offer many advantages compared to traditional open back fusion.

Through a small incision, about an inch in length, the surgeon will access the spine and remove the spinal anatomy, such as a severely damaged disc, causing pain, instability and nerve compression. Unlike traditional open back fusion that has to cut through the surrounding muscles and soft tissue to perform a spinal fusion, our minimally invasive surgery gently spreads apart tissue to reach the area. This helps reduce a patient’s recovery time and risk of complication because the muscles do not have to heal and rebuild.^ To stabilize the area, the surgeon will insert material, such as a bone graft or artificial disc, into the now-empty space.

For more information about a safer and effective alternative^ to traditional open back fusion, call our caring team today. If you’d like to find out if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures, ask a member of our team for you free MRI review.*