What is a
Lumbar Fusion (PLIF)?

Learn how a lumbar fusion can reduce back pain.

vimeo-video-thumbnail
video
play-sharp-fill
 
A leaf shaped logo with the outline of a spine inside. Text Bio Spine Institute Your Treatment: Introduction. Dr. Sheri Stone Physical Therapy. Let's start by talking about what might be happening with the spine and causing the symptoms you're experiencing, such as pain, tingling and numbness. An animation of the skeleton and organs in a human body. It zooms in on the back of the head and neck. First we have the spinal cord, which comes from the brainstem and descends down the cervical spine into the middle back and then low back, along with the spinal cord is a connected link of 33 vertebrae. The spine with three zone labels. Cervical, thoracic and lumbar. The cervical spine is made up of seven vertebrae. The lumbar spine is made up of five vertebrae. Traveling down the spine from which nerves emerge like thin branches. Within this chain of vertebrae is a small canal, the spinal canal. It is through this canal that the spinal cord and two pairs of nerves enter directly from the brainstem and continue down the back. Finally exiting the vertebrae before continuing into the legs. The vertebrae of the spine separate into parts, knobby white bones and circular discs. Each vertebrae is made up of several parts. There's the vertebral body, which is made of solid bone and provides the main support for the spinal column. Each side with lots of attached muscles and ligaments is called the transverse process. On the back is the spinal process, which protects the spinal canal. The bones stack into the spine with disks between each one. The bones connect together at a facet joint. Between each vertebral body is a disc that acts as a shock absorber. Each vertebra is connected to the next at a set joint, which is what allows the spine to move. However, those shock absorbing discs can get damaged. Often damage can be caused by a trauma such as a sports injury or car accident. But even without trauma, over time, the discs can start wearing a way due to the effects of gravity and normal wear and tear from everyday activities. A lower spine leaning in different directions. One of the discs between the bones pushes out slightly poor posture. Repetitive motions can increase the speed of wearing and cause a disc to rupture or herniated disc. Rupturing is often referred to as a slipped disc. The disc, pushing out from between the vertebrae, hits a nerve, which swells. Parts of the disc and travel down into the spinal canals, putting pressure on the nerves, which then cause pain and weakness in the legs. The vertebral bones rub against one another. Arthritic conditions can wear joint surfaces as well as causing destruction at the joints and shifting of the vertebral body alignment further damaging nerves. These changes can lead our surgeons to recommend what is known as a lumbar fusion for Cliff, which stands for posterior lumbar Interbody Fusion. Text Bio Spine Institute.
vimeo-video-thumbnail
video
play-sharp-fill
 
A leaf shaped logo with the outline of a spine inside. Text Bio Spine Institute Your Treatment: Introduction. Dr. Sheri Stone Physical Therapy. Let's start by talking about what might be happening with the spine and causing the symptoms you're experiencing, such as pain, tingling and numbness. An animation of the skeleton and organs in a human body. It zooms in on the back of the head and neck. First we have the spinal cord, which comes from the brainstem and descends down the cervical spine into the middle back and then low back, along with the spinal cord is a connected link of 33 vertebrae. The spine with three zone labels. Cervical, thoracic and lumbar. The cervical spine is made up of seven vertebrae. The lumbar spine is made up of five vertebrae. Traveling down the spine from which nerves emerge like thin branches. Within this chain of vertebrae is a small canal, the spinal canal. It is through this canal that the spinal cord and two pairs of nerves enter directly from the brainstem and continue down the back. Finally exiting the vertebrae before continuing into the legs. The vertebrae of the spine separate into parts, knobby white bones and circular discs. Each vertebrae is made up of several parts. There's the vertebral body, which is made of solid bone and provides the main support for the spinal column. Each side with lots of attached muscles and ligaments is called the transverse process. On the back is the spinal process, which protects the spinal canal. The bones stack into the spine with disks between each one. The bones connect together at a facet joint. Between each vertebral body is a disc that acts as a shock absorber. Each vertebra is connected to the next at a set joint, which is what allows the spine to move. However, those shock absorbing discs can get damaged. Often damage can be caused by a trauma such as a sports injury or car accident. But even without trauma, over time, the discs can start wearing a way due to the effects of gravity and normal wear and tear from everyday activities. A lower spine leaning in different directions. One of the discs between the bones pushes out slightly poor posture. Repetitive motions can increase the speed of wearing and cause a disc to rupture or herniated disc. Rupturing is often referred to as a slipped disc. The disc, pushing out from between the vertebrae, hits a nerve, which swells. Parts of the disc and travel down into the spinal canals, putting pressure on the nerves, which then cause pain and weakness in the legs. The vertebral bones rub against one another. Arthritic conditions can wear joint surfaces as well as causing destruction at the joints and shifting of the vertebral body alignment further damaging nerves. These changes can lead our surgeons to recommend what is known as a lumbar fusion for Cliff, which stands for posterior lumbar Interbody Fusion. Text Bio Spine Institute.

3D images simulate the procedure and elements may differ in color, texture and placement than an actual surgical procedure.

Procedure Length

PROCEDURE LENGTH

45 - 60 minutes

incision

INCISION SIZE

Two ¾” incisions

Patient Home Same Day

NO HOSPITAL STAY

Outpatient procedure

The vast majority of procedures at the BioSpine Institute are performed through a ¾” incision; however, there are a limited number of procedures that may require a slightly larger incision.

What is a lumbar fusion procedure?

A lumbar fusion procedure is surgical that is performed in the area of the lower back known as the lumbar region. During a lumbar fusion disc material is removed and bone graft is inserted into the disc space and surrounding spinal structure to act as a bridge or scaffold on which the bone can grow. Screws and rods are inserted to stabilize the spine while the treated area heals and fusion occurs. The ultimate goal of the procedure is to restore spinal stability. 

Graphic of: Vertebrae, Disc, Rod, Lamina
Graphic of: Facet Joint, Spacer, Screw
3/4" - incision size - same size as a penny

ACTUAL SIZE OF INCISION FOR MOST PROCEDURES!

The majority of patients will notice immediate improvement of some or all of their  symptoms while other symptoms may improve more gradually

Used To Treat These Conditions

A spinal disc that is damaged, causing back pain and other problems.

The soft cushion-like discs between vertebrae begin to deteriorate and the outer wall becomes brittle and weak.

When one or more bones in the spine break it’s known as a vertebrae fracture or spinal fracture.

When a bone in the spine slips forward and out of place, it’s known as spondylolisthesis.

When a disc puts pressure on a nerve, causing pain, weakness or numbness.

Spinal Tumors

Spine tumors

Spine tumors can push on the nerve tissue causing a range of symptoms from minor aches and discomfort to debilitating pain.

When a ruptured disc puts pressure on a nerve, causing pain, weakness or numbness.

How Will I Feel After Lumbar Fusion Surgery?

The majority of patients will notice immediate improvement of some or all of their symptoms while other symptoms may improve more gradually. A positive attitude and following your doctor’s post-surgery instructions will contribute to a satisfactory outcome. Most patients return to their regular activities within a few weeks.

*The Lumbar Fusion procedure is recognized by the American Medical Association.

Scroll to Top

click to close

We're sorry to interrupt, but we know a fear of surgery can hold some people back. 70% of the patients who come to BioSpine are sucessfully treated without surgery. The first step is understanding what is casuing your pain - take that step and schedule a consultation. It's that easy.
We're sorry to interrupt, but we know a fear of surgery can hold some people back. 70% of the patients who come to BioSpine are sucessfully treated without surgery. The first step is understanding what is casuing your pain - take that step and schedule a consultation. It's that easy.
Schedule an Appointment or Request Information.
Pictured: Doctor consulting with patient
Communicating With You!
You will be receiving informative emails about everything BioSpine. We will be reaching out to you by text and by phone to answer questions & schedule your consultation. We encourage you to interact with our team! Our goal is to make the process simple & easy. Thanks for Choosing BioSpine!
I Understand