Spinal Fusion with Intervertebral Cages And Pedicle Screws

Overview

Back pain is one of the most common symptoms patients can have during their life. It can be caused by a number of different reasons such as arthritis, degenerative spine conditions, or the natural aging process. There are instances where painful symptoms affecting the spine can be resolved through conservative methods without the need for surgery.

However, there are certain cases of severe back pain that need surgery to alleviate symptoms. If you have debilitating back pain that has not responded to conservative methods you may be recommended for a spinal fusion with intervertebral fusion cages and pedicle screws.

At BEST, we understand back pain is difficult to live with. Our patient care model puts the patient’s needs first in order to achieve a speedy recovery to get you back to your busy lifestyle. We take pride in our minimally invasive procedures, state-of-the-art facilities, and passionate staff. BEST is well-equipped to meet all your medical needs.    

What is Spinal Fusion with Intervertebral Cages And Pedicle Screws

Spinal fusion is surgery to connect two or more bones in any part of the spine. Connecting them prevents movement between them. Preventing movement helps to prevent pain. During spinal fusion, a surgeon places bone or a bone-like material in the space between two spinal bones. Metal plates, screws, or rods might hold the bones together. They then can fuse and heal as one bone. 

An intervertebral fusion cage is a large hollow cylinder made of metal, usually titanium, and is designed as a “cage”. This allows for the bone graft placed inside the hollow cylinder to allow the spinal fusion to occur. The holes that are throughout the cage allow the bone to form around and through the cage connecting the two vertebrae with solid bone.

Pedicle screws are threaded titanium or stainless-steel implants that are fastened through the vertebral pedicles located at the back of the spinal bones. Pedicle screws help secure rods and/or plates to the spinal segment(s) during a spinal fusion surgery. The screws act as anchor points and are typically positioned at 2 or 3 consecutive spinal segments connected by a short rod.

What to Expect

Intervertebral fusion cages are designed to be used in several different ways. One way is by making an incision in the back of the spine and inserting the cage between the vertebrae from the back side. This is usually done if you need to have another surgical procedure done at the same time to remove bone spurs or a herniated disc from the spinal canal. 

In most cases, two intervertebral fusion cages are used in each disc and are placed side by side using special instruments. Two holes are drilled into the disc to place the intervertebral fusion cages side by side. The fluoroscope is used throughout the procedure to visualize the use of the drills.

Bone graft is then placed inside the hollow intervertebral fusion cage. The cage will then be inserted into place between the vertebrae. Once the surgeon has ensured the cages are in the right position the operation is over. 

Pedicle screws are used sometimes in a spinal fusion to add extra support and strength to the fusion while it heals. Pedicle screws are placed above and below the vertebrae that were fused. A rod is used to connect the screws which prevents movement and allows the bone graft to heal. After the fusion is completely healed, the screws and rods can be removed. Removal isn’t necessary unless they cause the patient discomfort.

Spinal Fusion with Intervertebral Cages And Pedicle Screws Treatments at BEST

Patients at BEST Health System have access to a variety of health services including spinal fusion with intervertebral cages and pedicle screws. In addition to these services, we offer a range of other options of treatment such as conservative treatment, therapies, surgical procedures, pain management, and diagnostic imaging services. 

If you are recommended for a spinal fusion in order to alleviate debilitating back pain, BEST can help. BEST offers an array of services performed by our board-certified surgeons to help get you back to the lifestyle you deserve. Our minimally invasive procedures typically employ an incision that is less than an inch. This allows for a faster recovery, eliminated the need for an overnight hospital stay, and reduces overall risks and complications. 

To learn more about what BEST has to offer, feel free to contact us today!

 

 

Procedure Doctors

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