Lumbar Decompression and Fusion

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Evolution of Lumbar Decompression and Fusion

Surgery for degenerative spondylolisthesis may be warranted in cases where there is persistent, incapacitating pain or neurologic dysfunction. Decompression of the nerves and fusion is the treatment of choice to prevent disease progression, manage pain and provide neurological relief. In this procedure, the spinal canal is widened by removing or trimming part of the vertebrae (lamina). This creates more space for the nerves and relieves pressure on the spinal cord. Fusion is then performed to permanently connect the unstable vertebral segments together to prevent further slippage and stop motion within that segment. There are multiple techniques to fuse the spine to include using metal, plastic or bone graft, and varying approaches to access the spine through either the front (abdomen), sides, or back.

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