Neurosurgery located in Midtown, Ventura, CA
If you have severe lower back pain or sciatica symptoms that haven’t responded to non-surgical treatment, you might benefit from a lumbar fusion procedure. David Westra, MD, a board-certified neurosurgeon, and Michael Dorsi, MD at Ventura Neurosurgery, in Ventura, California, perform lumbar fusion procedures to correct a variety of painful conditions so you can return to a pain-free, active life. Call Ventura Neurosurgery or schedule a consultation online today to learn more about how lumbar fusion can repair your spine.
Lumbar Fusion Q&A
What is lumbar fusion?
Lumbar fusion is a surgical procedure that joins two or more of the vertebra in your lower back together. Your neurosurgeon might use a bone graft and surgical pins, screws, or wires to join your vertebrae. Lumbar fusion reduces abnormal movement in your lower spine and increases stability and support.
Why would I need lumbar fusion?
The team at Ventura Neurosurgery performs lumbar fusion to repair painful spinal conditions that don’t respond to non-surgical treatments. For example, your neurosurgeon might recommend lumbar fusion to treat:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Slipped discs (spondylolisthesis)
- Spinal stenosis
- Herniated discs
- Fractured vertebra
Your surgeon might also combine lumbar fusion with spinal decompression to increase stability and support in your lower spine.
What happens during lumbar fusion?
The team at Ventura Neurosurgery uses state-of-the-art surgical techniques and tools to perform a lumbar fusion. Whenever possible, they use minimally invasive surgical techniques to reduce trauma to your surrounding muscles and organs, as well as your risk of scarring and infection. Minimally invasive surgery usually provides a less painful and more rapid recovery.
For example, the team might recommend extreme lateral interbody fusion (XLIF). This minimally invasive procedure allows your neurosurgeon to access your spine from the side of your body, using just a few small incisions and tubal dilators to reach your spine and perform the fusion. The team also uses percutaneous screw placement to secure your lumbar fusion without having to make a large incision in your body.
Regardless of the specific approach your neurosurgeon uses, they usually place a bone graft or a bone-like substance between the vertebrae. Then, they attach and secure your vertebrae with screws, pins, or wires, which hold your vertebrae together while they fuse.
What should I expect while recovering from lumbar fusion?
Your neurosurgeon might recommend that you wear a back brace to provide extra stability to your spine while you recover. They also prescribe medicine to manage your pain and reduce your risk of infection.
They also prescribe physical therapy to help you maintain your strength, flexibility, and range of motion while you recover. Your therapist helps you learn how to move correctly while keeping your spine in proper alignment.
Call Ventura Neurosurgery or make an appointment online today if you have persistent low back pain that hasn’t responded to non-surgical treatment and want to explore lumbar fusion.