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A posterior lumbar spinal fusion is normally performed because of degenerative changes, herniated discs or metastatic processes that create back and leg pain. The procedure permanently joins together two or more vertebral bodies in the spine, restoring alignment and preventing further damage to the spinal cord and the nerves. By way of a small incision, the spinal cord and nerves are decompressed. The unhealthy disc space is shaved out and interbody spacers are inserted to restore proper disc height. The interbody spacers are filled with bone graft. The fusion area is normally immobilized by titanium rods and screws. After six months to a year, the bone graft joins the vertebral bodies together, forming one solid bone.
We’re affiliated with the North American Spine Society, keeping current on advances in spinal health, as well as other prestigious medical societies.
Citrus Spine Institute, in collaboration with the hospital, highly recommends patients attend the Spine Academy Program prior to surgery. This program discusses details of the procedure, hospital stay and postoperative recovery, and answers many frequently asked questions. Patients normally wear a lumbar spine brace for the first 4-6 weeks for all out of bed activities to help facilitate healing. Postoperative limitations are restricted to no heavy lifting, pushing and pulling more than 5 pounds initially and then gradually increased.