Spinal Fusion is a surgical procedure performed by Spinal Surgeons to treat various conditions in the lower back that aim to reduce pain, address instability or nerve compression. It can also be use to treat severe traumatic or chronic conditions surrounding the spinal column. This is a medical procedure used to connect two or more vertebrae in the spine, thereby restoring stability and easing chronic back pain.
This process is similar to welding, in which the goal is to permanently fuse two separate parts into a single solid unit.
Spinal fusion is usually done by implanting a bone graft — whether artificial or harvested from the patient or a donor — in between the vertebrae to be fused. This bone graft is what allows the two vertebrae to heal into one unit. It also stimulates bone production and facilitates quicker healing. This may be augmented with titanium metallic implants like (pedicle) screws.
In Singapore, back pain surgery is not normally recommended unless the pain is persistent and worsening despite taking prescribed medicines and undergoing physiotherapy.
Spinal fusion may be recommended to treat the following:
Most of the time, Singapore spine pain surgery centers recommend the combination of spinal fusion with physiotherapy sessions to better restore form and function to the spine.
As with most options for spinal fusion surgery in Singapore today, spinal fusion may be done either via a traditional open or minimally invasive approach . Apart from the size of the initial incision and the manner by which the site is accessed, however, the rest of the procedure stays the same. The process takes several hours and is conducted under general anesthesia.
Spinal fusion can be done in one of two ways: through the belly or abdomen (anterior lumbar interbody fusion) or from the back (posterior fusion).
Once the incision is created and the surgeon has full access to the spine, bone graft will be placed between the two vertebrae to be fused. The bone graft may be taken from the patient (autograft) or a donor (allograft), or purely artificial. Titanium screws and rods are also used to keep the graft in place as the spine heals.
Well-trained and recognized in the field of general orthopaedics, Dr Chua Soo Yong is known for his experience in performing spinal fusion and complex spinal surgery in Singapore.
Dr Chua’s clinic, Atlas Orthopaedic Group, is also known for its effective management of sports injuries and conditions affecting the spine, joints and limbs. Schedule a consultation today by calling 6262-0555.