About Spinal Motion Preservation Treatments
Motion-preserving spine surgery is a general term that describes a variety of surgical treatment options for the cervical and lumbar spine, where a traditional spinal fusion is avoided.
The goal in these cases is that the natural motion of the patient’s spine is preserved as much as possible. This is done in an attempt to prevent adverse outcomes commonly seen with conventional spinal fusions — most notably, the development of adjacent-level degenerative disc disease.
How is Spinal Motion Preservation Surgery Performed?
Several different surgical approaches have been developed, and are performed at The Morrison Clinic, in order to preserve motion in the lumbar spine. These surgeries include:
- Total disc replacement (TDR surgery)
- Partial disc (nucleus) replacement
- Interspinous spacers
- Dynamic stabilization devices
- Total facet replacement devices
The design of devices varies greatly. The devices are created using a similar rationale, but are unique in design, relative to their lumbar counterparts.
Am I a Candidate?
Motion preservation surgery is used to treat the following conditions:
- Trauma from an auto or sports-related injury
- Spinal compression
- Spinal fractures
- Herniated or bulging discs
Schedule an e-consult here to learn more about your candidacy for Spinal Motion Preservation surgery at The Morrison Clinic.
What to Expect from a Spinal Motion Preservation Procedure
Instrumentation includes implants such as rods, plates, screws, interbody devices, cages and hooks. Implanted instrumentation immediately stabilizes the spine after surgery to add strength and help maintain proper alignment while fusion occurs.
Determing if Motion-Preserving Spine Surgery is Necessary
To determine if which motion-preserving spine surgery is best for your particular condition, our spine neurosurgeons will recommend the following tests:
- Laboratory tests
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Computed tomography scan
- Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS)
- Bone scan
- Selective nerve root block
- Sacroiliac (SI) joint injection
Spinal Motion Preservation Aftercare & Positive Recovery
After a motion preservation surgery, our specialized spine neurosurgeons often encourage patients to begin moving as soon as possible. This often begins day one following the operation. This is because rapidly resuming activity decreases your risk of developing a blood clot in the leg (DVT). Further, movement can speed up the recovery process.
After your operation, a physiotherapist will help you safely regain strength and movement. You can expect to perform simple exercises at home to help your recovery progress.
Patients often return home one to four days following their operation, though this varies depending on your specific procedure.
Other tips for effectively managing your recovery:
- Walking is a good way to stay active
- Avoid heavy lifting
- Avoid awkward twisting and leaning
- Do not resume physcial everyday tasks until our neurosurgeons have approved the relevant activity
To monitor your recovery process, Dr. Morrison often asks patients to return for one or more follow-up appointments.
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Immediately following surgery, I was standing and walking pain free. I am enjoying my life again and have Dr. Morrison to thank!
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We want you to be confident in your quality of life. Let’s discuss if a Spinal Motion Preservation can deliver the best outcome.