What is Involved in an Axial Fusion?

man suffering from back painAxial fusion is a cutting-edge procedure that’s performed to alleviate pain and reduce function that’s caused by disc damage in the lower back.

In this blog, orthopedic surgeon Dr. Steven Schiebert of NJ Spine Surgeons explains what’s involved with axial fusion.

Why is axial fusion performed?

This surgical procedure is performed to address disc damage in your lower back. It’s less invasive than other fusion procedures since it’s performed through a small incision near the tailbone. It allows your doctor to remove only the damaged part of the disc while preserving its outer wall.

What is involved with this type of surgery?

During this procedure, your surgeon will make a small incision near your tailbone. A special X-ray called a fluoroscope is used to help the surgeon pass a long narrow tube between the bowel and sacrum (a bone in your lower back). A drill is passed through this tube in order to get through the bone and reach the damaged disc.

Specialized tools are used to remove the inner portion of the damaged disc while preserving its outer wall.  Hardware, sometimes including screws, is then used to restore normal disc space, fix into the bone, and provide stabilization.

What are the advantages of an axial fusion?

This procedure provides the following advantages:

  • It allows your surgeon to avoid the major back muscles.
  • Recovery time is faster.
  • You’ll have less discomfort after your procedure when compared to other, more invasive types of surgery.
  • It helps stabilize a specific area of the spine that’s causing a great deal of pain, so discomfort is reduced.
  • Your back will have increased function after an axial fusion.

Where should you have an axial fusion performed?

Dr. Steven Schiebert is a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon who specializes in spine surgery, including fusions. He recommends the most conservative treatment possible to achieve the desired result, and when surgery is required, he chooses minimally invasive techniques whenever possible. This means patients will experience minimal downtime and post-operative discomfort.

His knowledge and experience, combined with his dedication to compassionate care, helps patients understand their conditions as well as their treatment options so they can make informed decisions that they’ll be comfortable with. He’ll make sure you understand what a procedure can achieve, as well as any risks involved, and what to expect during your recovery.

If you’re experiencing back pain, make an appointment today with New Jersey Spine Surgeons. We’ll help relieve your pain and improve your function, helping you to regain your normal lifestyle.

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