Spondylolisthesis is a spinal condition where one vertebra slips forward over the one below it. This condition can also lead to the deformity of the spine as well as a condition where the spinal canal is narrowed (spinal stenosis) or the exiting nerve roots are compressed (foraminal stenosis).
This condition causes not just back pain but also leg pain. When the vertebra slips forward on the other it is known as anterolisthesis and when the vertebra slips backward the condition is known as retrolisthesis.
Multi level Fusion Spondylolisthesis Surgical Process
Multi level fusion is often the choice treatment option for people who are suffering from spondylolisthesis and their symptoms of severe back pain and other discomfort show no sign of relief with the help of conservative treatment techniques. If the spondylolisthesis is not restricted to one level of the vertebra then multilevel fusion us usually considered.
Usually two types of multilevel spinal fusion techniques are used for spondylolisthesis – the posterior approach where the doctors approach the spine from the back and the anterior approach where the doctors approach the spine from the front.
The posterior fusion technique used with pedicle screws instrumentation is considered the most appropriate and successful spinal fusion for spondylolisthesis. When this fusion technique is combined with disc space fusion the results are even better with increased rate of stability. Techniques used in multilevel fusion for spondylolisthesis include:
- Posterior fusion
- Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion
- Posterior and Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion
Post-surgical Recovery Rate
Most of the time a patient who has had spinal fusion for spndylolisthesis is kept under observation in the hospital for one to five days. Ambulation in the early post-operative period is encouraged as it limits the chances of postoperative complications. Normal activities can be resumed after three to six months after the surgery.