After a spinal fusion at two levels in my low back, the X-rays show it wasn't successful. There's still motion at one level. I'm not having any symptoms. Should I still have another operation to fuse it again?

Maybe not. Some research has shown X-rays aren't entirely accurate in showing pseudoarthrosis. Pseudoarthrosis refers to a "false joint" where the motion is taking

Patients with pseudoarthrosis on X-ray don't always show any actual loss of stability when the doctor opens up the spine to repeat the fusion. If you aren't having any symptoms, you may want to adopt a "wait-and-see" approach.

See your doctor at regular intervals, and see what happens in six months to two year's time. You can always have that second operation, but waiting is a good option if it turns out you don't really need it.

James W. Simmons, Jr, MD, et al. Pseudoarthrosis after Lumbar Spine Fusion: Nonoperative
Salvage with Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields. In The American Journal of
. January 2004. Vol. 33. No. 1. Pp. 27-30.

 Post to

 Email to a Friend

*Disclaimer:*The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.

All content provided by eORTHOPOD® is a registered trademark of Medical Multimedia Group, L.L.C.. Content is the sole property of Medical Multimedia Group, LLC and used herein by permission.

Back to top

MySpace Tracker