Type of Surgery

Information

Doctor Certified

Last updated: 11/24/2009

Aftercare

The patient will stay in the hospital for four to six days after the operation.

Post-operative pain is managed by intravenous pain medication. Many centers use patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) pumps, which allow patients to control the...

timing of pain medication.

For several days after the operation, the patient is unable to eat or drink because of the lasting effects of the anesthesia on the bowels. Fluids and nutrition are delivered via the IV line.

The nurse helps the patient sit up several times per day, and assists with other needs as well. Physical therapy begins several days after the operation.

Most activities are restricted for several weeks. Strenuous activities such as bike riding or running are usually resumed after six to eight months. The surgical incision should be protected from sunburn for approximately one year to promote healing of the scar.



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In this spinal fusion, the surgeon makes an incision in the lower abdomen to access the lumbosacral spine (A). The disks between the vertebrae are removed (B), and bone grafts are inserted into the spaces (C). Then another incision is made in the patient's back (D), and the vertebrae are exposed and fixed to the pedicle plates and screws (E) (Illustration by GGS Inc.) In this spinal fusion, the surgeon makes an incision in the lower abdomen to access the lumbosacral spine (A). The disks between the vertebrae are removed (B), and bone grafts are inserted into the spaces (C). Then another incision is made in the patient's back (D), and the vertebrae are exposed and fixed to the pedicle plates and screws (E) (Illustration by GGS Inc.)




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Other Information

Spinal fusion, also known as spondylodesis or spondylosyndesis, is a surgical technique used to combine two or more vertebrae. Supplementary bone tissue (either autograft or allograft) is used in conjunction with the body's natural osteoblastic processes. This procedure is used primarily to eliminate the pain caused by abnormal motion of the vertebrae by immobilizing the vertebrae themselves.


From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spinal_fusion

Other Information

For a neurosurgery, as for any other surgery, it's important to always bring x-rays and any other medical records the patients has.


-Dr Catherine McAuley

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