Innovative Surgical Technique Improves Operation Efficiency and Patient Outcomes
One of the most common minimally invasive spine surgeries is known as Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion (LLIF). When a patient suffers from conditions such as scoliosis or degenerative disc disease, LLIF can stabilize the spine and help minimize painful motions. This is done by making a one-inch incision near the waist and inserting a bone graft which, when it fuses with other spinal bones, restores the necessary height to alleviate nerve pinching. Terms like DLIF, XLIF, and LLIF all refer to various types of lumbar interbody fusion techniques.
An exciting new study, brought forth by ABS’ Dr. J Alex Thomas and his colleagues, shows that performing LLIF surgery when the patient is in a prone position makes these surgeries both more efficient for surgeons and more effective for patients. This study was published in the acclaimed journal Spine in April of 2023. The study evaluated outcomes for 101 patients who underwent spinal revision surgery in American and Australian institutions and found, unequivocally, that the surgeries were easier on everyone. Operation times were shorter, patients spent less time in the hospital, and there were no increased complications. This means minimally invasive surgeries just got easier for patients and practitioners, thanks to ABS doctors and their colleagues around the world!