Spine Procedures

 
 

Cervical - Anterior Cervical Discectomy, Fusion - Instruments

Anterior cervical discectomy procedures are usually performed to remove pressure on nerves from disc herniations. A disc herniates when the outer portion of the disc ruptures and some of the softer disc nucleus material squeezes out. The herniated disc pushes against the spinal cord or spinal nerves and tends to cause pain in the neck or arms. Removing the ruptured disc alleviates pressure on the nerves or spinal cord, which usually relieves the pain. A bone graft is usually inserted with instrumentation to keep the disc space at a normal height and fuse the vertebrae above and below the removed disc


Cervical - Cervical Laminectomy, Fusion - Instrumented

A cervical laminectomy removes the spinous process and lamina from a vertebra to eliminate pressure on the spinal cord. The source of the pressure is often spinal stenosis, a condition in which there is a narrowing of the spinal canal that causes pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. After removing bone, bone grafts can be added to fuse the vertebrae and provide stability to the spine.


Cervical Laminoplasty

A cervical laminoplasty is performed to remove pressure on the spinal cord and nerves caused by spinal stenosis, a condition in which there is a narrowing of the spinal canal. The laminoplasty procedure involves making a hinge on one side of the lamina to create more space, relieving the pressure on the spinal cord.


Cervical - Posterior Cervical Laminotomy

Cervical laminotomies are performed to relieve pressure on a compressed spinal nerve in the neck. Removal of bone spurs or disc herniations usually relieves the associated neck and arm pain. Whereas laminectomies remove the entire lamina, a laminotomy is done when only a portion of the lamina needs to be excised in order to remove material that is compressing nerve roots.


Computer-assisted Spine Surgery

Computer-assisted spine surgery enables surgeons to view the position of their instruments against three-dimensional images of a patient’s spine, increasing the accuracy and safety of the procedure. The instrument tracking technology is similar to the way a GPS satellite tracks automobiles on the roads. The ability to see and track instruments in three-dimensional views allows for accurate targeting, improved measurements, and precision in surgical spine procedures that were not possible using the naked eye alone.


Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion (LLIF)

A variety of techniques exist for fusing lumbar spine vertebrae to help alleviate back pain. Lateral access spine surgery is a minimally invasive surgery that accesses the spine from incisions on the side of the body. This procedure avoids separating the low back muscles, cutting bone, or moving aside blood vessels as required for other minimally invasive spine fusion procedures (PLIF, TLIF, ALIF). Lateral access spine surgery can treat a variety of conditions including herniations, asymmetric disc degeneration (degenerative scoliosis), nerve impingement, certain tumors, and as discussed in this animation, instability and pain resulting from disc degeneration. When treating this source of back and leg pain, most of the disc is removed, a spacer is used to restore proper disc height, and bone grafts are added to fuse the adjacent vertebrae, restoring stability. This procedure is commonly called the Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion, or LLIF.


Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF)

An anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) is performed to remove a large portion of a degenerated disc that is frequently the source of back or leg pain. This procedure makes space between the vertebral bodies, relieving pressure and creating more room for spinal nerves to exit. It is called an anterior procedure because the spine is approached from the front. Unlike posterior approaches (from the back), the anterior approach avoids damage to the low back muscles. The removed disc portion is replaced with implanted bone grafting materials and adjacent vertebral bodies fuse to provide support.


Lumbar - Laminectomy

A posterior lumbar laminectomy, which is also called a decompression, is done to treat pain caused by degenerative conditions in the lower back. Disc degeneration, bone spurs, and other conditions can cause narrowing and pressure on the spinal nerves (radiculopathy) exiting the spine. A laminectomy procedure removes part of the vertebral lamina to reduce the pressure.


Lumbar - Laminectomy, Fusion - Instrumented

A posterior lumbar laminectomy is done to correct spinal stenosis, which is a narrowing of the spinal canal caused by degenerative conditions in the lower back. Pressure on the spinal nerves (radiculopathy) exiting the spine causes pain, and a laminectomy removes part of the vertebral lamina to reduce the pressure. After removing bone, bone grafts can be added to fuse the vertebrae. In instances where there is instability, instrumentation is added to provide greater stability to the spine.


Lumbar - Laminectomy, Fusion - Uninstrumented

A posterior lumbar laminectomy which is also called a decompression, is done to treat pain caused by degenerative conditions in the lower back. Disc degeneration, bone spurs, and other conditions can cause narrowing of the spinal canal and pressure on the spinal nerves (radiculopathy) exiting the spine. A laminectomy removes part of the vertebral lamina to reduce this pressure. Following the laminectomy, bone grafts can be used for fusing vertebrae to stabilize and support the spine. In patients with little or no instability, where the vertebrae, discs, and surrounding tissues fit tightly together, adding instrumentation is not necessary and the bone grafts can sufficiently stabilize the spine.


Lumbar - Minimally Invasive Approach (PLIF)

A posterior lumbar interbody fusion (PLIF) is performed to remove a degenerating disc that is the source of back or leg pain and fuse spinal vertebrae with bone grafts. It is called a posterior procedure because the spine is approached through an incision on the back. In patients with spinal instability, instrumentation is used to provide space for placing the grafts and to help stabilize the spine. Using a technique known as minimally invasive surgery, this procedure can be done with a much smaller incision than traditional open spinal surgeries and avoids damaging the low back muscles.


Lumbar - Minimally Invasive Approach (TLIF)

A transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) is performed to remove a portion of a disc that is the source of back or leg pain and fuse the spine. Like the PLIF (posterior lumbar interbody fusion) procedure, bone graft is used to fuse the spinal vertebrae after the disc is removed. However, the TLIF procedure places a single bone graft between the vertebrae from the side, rather than two bone grafts from the rear as in the PLIF procedure. In patients with spinal instability, instrumentation is used to help stabilize the spine during the bone graft fusion. Using a technique known as minimally invasive surgery, this procedure can be done with a much smaller incision than traditional open spinal surgeries and decreases damage to the low back muscles.


Lumbar - Minimally Invasive Discectomy (PDR)

Accessing the Disc Through the opening in the retractor, the surgeon is now able to remove portions of the lamina and facet joint bones. Removing bone here allows the surgeon to access the disc and compressed spinal nerves.


Lumber - Partial Discectomy

A herniated lumbar disc can push on spinal nerves and cause severe, shooting, leg pain, numbness, and/or weakness. Removing part of the herniated disc in a partial discectomy procedure can prevent the disc from irritating the nerve.


Lumber - Posterior Interbody Fusion (PLIF)

A posterior lumbar interbody fusion (PLIF) is performed to remove a disc that is the source of back or leg pain and fuse spinal vertebrae with bone grafts. It is called a posterior procedure because the spine is approached through an incision on the back. Instrumentation is used to provide space for placing the grafts and to help stabilize the spine.


Lumber - Transforaminal Lumber Interbody Fusion (TLIF)

A transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) is performed to remove a portion of a disc that is the source of back or leg pain. Like the PLIF (posterior lumbar interbody fusion) procedure, bone graft is used to fuse the spinal vertebrae after the disc is removed. However, the TLIF procedure places a single bone graft between the vertebrae from the side, rather than two bone grafts from the rear as in the PLIF procedure. Inserting the graft from the side where the facet joint has been removed is an effort to avoid moving or damaging nerve roots during the procedure.


Lumber Vertebral Body Replacement

Spine fractures involving the vertebral body can cause pressure on the spinal nerves, resulting in pain. Severe fractures are unstable and often require surgery to remove and replace the damaged vertebra and stabilize the spine.


Thoracic - Scoliosis Treatment: Derotation With Instrument

Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine. The majority of cases, particularly those occurring in adolescents, tend to have a genetic basis. However, certain neuromuscular disorders, such as muscular dystrophy, can cause scoliosis. Additionally, asymmetric spinal disc degeneration can cause the spine to curve, resulting in a form or scoliosis that primarily affects adults. Correcting scoliosis usually involves placing multiple screws or hooks along the length of the curve and using instrumentation to decrease the curvature. Bone grafts or bone graft substitutes may be added to fuse the vertebrae in the straighter, less curved spine configuration.


Thoracic - Thoracic Laminectomy and Instrumentation

A narrowing of the spinal canal can cause painful pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. Sometimes the source of this narrowing is a tumor that has spread to the thoracic region of the spine and is pushing on the spinal cord. A thoracic laminectomy removes the lamina from vertebral bodies, providing access to remove the tumor and eliminate pressure on the spinal cord. After removing bone, instrumentation can be added to stabilize the vertebrae.


Thoracic - Thoracic Vertebral Body Replacement (Anterior)

An anterior thoracic vertebral body replacement approaches the spine from the front, removes and replaces a damaged vertebra, and stabilizes the spine. The procedure can remove painful pressure on the spinal cord and nerves that has resulted from trauma in which a vertebra is severely fractured, or pressure caused when a tumor has spread to the front of the spine and fractured a vertebra.