What is a stabilization surgery?
Stabilization surgery is a common procedure to stabilize one or more vertebrae by using metal implants (screw-rod system or plate-screw system).
What is a decompression surgery?
Spinal decompression surgery is a procedure which aims at relieving symptoms caused by pressure or compression on the spinal cord and/or nerve roots.
When is stabilization surgery necessary?
If you suffer from an unstable fracture of a vertebral body, due to an accident for example, a stabilization surgery is crucial for your recovery. But also spinal degeneration can cause vertebral instabilities, as e.g. in case of a spondylolisthesis. A stabilization of several vertebrae can also be necessary in case of extensive decompression surgery. In case of spinal tumors or spinal infections stabilization surgery is essential.
What kinds of stabilization surgeries are there?
- Posterior monosegmental stabilization: stabilization of one vertebral motion segment (two adjacent vertebrae) by a screw/rod system with a surgical approach from the back.
- Posterior bisegmental stabilization: stabilization of two vertebral motion segments (three adjacent vertebrae) by a screw-rod-system and leaving out the central vertebra.
- Anterior stabilization: depending on the fracture, an additional stabilization from the front is necessary. The injured vertebral motion segment is stabilized by the body's own bone (iliac crest) or a cage.
- PLIF: "Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion" is a fusion technique from the back. The surgeon removes the affected disc and replaces it by two titanium cages. Additionally, the vertebrae are stabilized by a screw-rod-system.
- TLIF: "Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion" is a refinement of the PLIF procedure. After removal of the facet joint, the affected disc is replaced by a banana-shaped cage. A screw-rod system is placed for additional stabilization.
- ALIF: "Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion" is a fusion technique from the front. After removal of the affected disc, it is replaced by a titanium cage along with a plate which provides necessary stability.
What about the postoperative care?
The treatment after surgery depends on the underlying pathology for surgery, i.e. if you have to undergo surgery for an injury, scoliosis, infection, tumor, herniated disc etc. postoperative treatment varies significantly. However, most of our patients are up and walking on the first day after surgery.
Is stabilization and/or decompression surgery available at BG Trauma Hospital?
All our specialists have performed stabilization and decompression surgery for many years, so we offer the full range of surgical techniques.