It’s estimated that over 540 million people worldwide are affected by lower back pain at one time or the other in their life. The prevalence rate is estimated to be 50-84% globally, with the incidence in India being higher among the low-income group who engage in physically challenging roles.
It’s also estimated that majority of patients present late at the hospital when the problem has deteriorated and needs intensive treatment. While doctors normally recommend non-surgical methods as the first line of treatment, there are many cases that do require surgery. Spinal fusion is one such surgery that is used to stabilize the spine, correct a deformity, reduce pain and improve quality of life. This type of surgery can be performed on any part of the spine including the cervical, thoracic, lumbar or sacral regions.
Spinal fusion surgery involves irreversible fusion of two or more vertebrae in the spine, resulting in elimination of any movement between them. The procedure includes placing a piece of graft bone or bone-like material in the space between two vertebrae. Screws, rods and metal plates may additionally be used to provide stability to the joint so that it can heal successfully into a solid unit.
Some of the reasons for performing spinal fusion surgery include:
*Mechanical back pain lasting more than 6 months that can be attributed to degenerative disc disease.
*For correcting deformities such as the sideways curvature of the spine known as scoliosis as well as spinal stenosis.
*Spinal fusion is also done to provide spinal stability after removing a damaged or herniated disc.
*The spine may become unstable or weak if there is excessive or abnormal movement between two vertebrae. Severe arthritis of the spine can lead to such abnormal side effects that ultimately require spinal fusion surgery.
*Tumor growth along the spine can lead to compression, collapse and damage to the spine structure thus requiring spinal fusion of the vertebrae to maintain spine stability.
*Complicated fractures and trauma can also lead to damaged discs and instability in the spine which can best be corrected with spinal fusion.
For the bones to fully fuse, several months may be required. You will also need rehabilitation to teach you to walk, sit or stand in the right way so the bones stay aligned together.
For those living in Bangalore, the Sita Bhateja Specialist Hospital offers you a formidable team of highly-specialized orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons who are experts at performing high-precision spinal surgeries, backed by modular high-tech operating theatres. An in-house physiotherapy center adds to the patient’s recovery process. Find more information here: http://www.sbshospital.com/Leave a reply