Spine & Orthopedic Pain Centers

Spinal Fusion

Spinal fusion is surgery to permanently connect two or more vertebrae in your spine, eliminating motion between them.

Spinal fusion is also known as:

  • arthrodesis
  • anterior spinal fusion
  • posterior spinal fusion
  • vertebral interbody fusion
  • spondylodesis
  • spondylosyndesis

Spinal fusion involves techniques designed to mimic the normal healing process of broken bones. During spinal fusion, your surgeon places bone or a bonelike material within the space between two spinal vertebrae. Metal plates, screws and rods may be used to hold the vertebrae together, so they can heal into one solid unit.



Why it’s done

it’s useful for treating spinal disorders that make movement painful.

These disorders include:

A spinal fusion procedure may also include a discectomy. When the disc is removed, bone grafts are placed into the empty disc space to maintain the right height between bones. Your doctor uses the two vertebrae on either side of the removed disc to form a bridge (or fusion) across the bone grafts to promote long-term stability.

When spinal fusion is performed in the cervical spine along with a discectomy, it’s called cervical fusion. Instead of removing a vertebra, the surgeon removes discs or bone spurs from the cervical spine, which is in the neck. Contact a pain specialist if you have any of these symptoms or conditions.

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