Scoliosis Fusion Surgery
When other treatment options fail to bring you the relief you need, your doctor may suggest you seek scoliosis fusion surgery. Scoliosis fusion surgery helps correct curvature of the spine caused by either disc degeneration or adult degenerative scoliosis. During the procedure, two vertebrae are joined together in order to increase stability, prevent movement and reduce pressure on the nerves. Screws, bone grafts and stabilizing rods are used to join them.
At New Jersey Neck & Back Institute, P.C., board certified spine surgeon Dr. Sandro LaRocca performs this surgery to help improve his patients’ quality of life. Schedule an appointment today at either the Lawrenceville or Toms River, NJ office to see if this surgery is right for you.
Overview of Scoliosis Fusion Surgery
No matter where your curvature is located along the spine or how severe it is, Dr. LaRocca and his team may be able to help. He specializes in three different types of scoliosis surgery, including:
- Posterior (back) approach
- Anterior (front) approach
- Blended anterior/posterior approach
During the posterior approach, Dr. LaRocca accesses the spine via the back. He uses rods and screws to help stabilize and straighten the spine. Then, the top layer of bone is removed to expose the soft healing bone underneath. A mesh-like cage may be inserted to bridge the gap between vertebrae. After that, graft material is applied along the spine to help promote successful fusion of the vertebrae. Eventually, new bone will grow and fill in the spaces of the cage. Additional bone grafts can be placed around the spine to enhance the bony union further. If the patient also has spinal stenosis, a laminectomy may also be performed at this time.
The anterior approach, however, is done from the front of the body and is typically used if spinal column realignment is necessary or if added structural support is required. In most cases, this technique also leads to better fusion and healing rates. During this procedure, Dr. LaRocca replaces the affected vertebral discs with bone graft material to help the vertebrae fuse together.
The bone graft can come from several different sources:
- The bone being removed from a vertebrae
- Larger section of bone from the patient’s pelvis (requires additional incision)
- Donor bone from a bone bank
- Organic, artificial composite materials
What to Expect
If you’ve tried chiropractic care, physical therapy, injections and more to alleviate your back pain without finding success, your doctor may recommend surgery to address your symptoms. After conducting a thorough physical exam and review of your medical history and imaging, Dr. LaRocca will be able to determine the best course of action for your treatment. While recovery time varies from one patient to another, normal function usually returns quickly after the surgery. Full recovery can take anywhere from three to six months, and some patients may also have to limit strenuous physical activity and wear a back brace while the spine heals.
Interested in learning more about scoliosis surgery? If you’ve tried other treatment options and you’re still experiencing pain, tingling, weakness and other symptoms, then surgery may be the best option. Contact Dr. LaRocca and the team at New Jersey Neck & Back Institute, P.C. for more information today.