A spinal fusion is surgery to connect adjoining vertebrae. Fusing two vertebrae together prevents painful movement between the bones and restores spinal stability when the bones or discs are damaged.
Following a spinal fusion, you lose movement between the two vertebrae. However, the spinal fusion affects a small segment of your spine, so the procedure has little impact on your ability to move.
Since the fusion relieves your pain, your overall movement improves compared to your pre-surgery condition.
The team at Beaufort Orthopaedic Sports & Spine initially treats your spine condition with conservative options. For example, you may need anti-inflammatory medications, activity modification, structured exercises, or injection therapy.
When you continue to have back or neck pain, and especially if your pain is severe enough to stop you from staying active, you may need a spinal fusion.
They commonly perform a spinal fusion for patients diagnosed with:
Spinal fusion is a primary treatment for scoliosis. For most spine conditions, however, your provider at Beaufort Orthopaedic Sports & Spine performs a spinal fusion after first repairing the underlying problem, such as removing a damaged disc or decompressing nerves.
During a spinal fusion, your Beaufort Orthopaedic Sports & Spine provider removes the existing disc and replaces it with a bone graft. Your bone graft could come from your own bones, a donor bank, or a synthetic cage-like structure.
The cage, which is shaped to fit the space of the disc, is made from biocompatible material and filled with proteins that promote bone growth.
After your bone graft is implanted, the two vertebrae grow over the graft and fuse into one strong bone.
The expert surgeons at Beaufort Orthopaedic Sports & Spine specialize in minimally invasive procedures, including spinal fusion. However, not all spinal fusions can be done using minimally invasive techniques. Your provider talks with you about your options during an initial consultation.
To learn about spinal fusion for chronic back or neck pain, call Beaufort Orthopaedic Sports & Spine or use the online booking feature.