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360 Spinal Fusion

An advanced procedure for correcting deformities of the lower back, a 360 Spinal Fusion is designed to provide a high degree of stability, and to significantly reduce–or completely eradicate–back pain. In a sense, a 360 Fusion is two procedures in one. Both are lumbar procedures, but one is performed from the front of the body (the anterior) and one is performed from the back (the posterior).

Benefits of 360 Spinal Fusion

Fusing both the front (anterior) and back (posterior) of the spine provides a high degree of stability for the spine and a large surface area for bone fusion to occur. Also, approaching both sides of the spine often allows for a more aggressive pain reduction for patients who have a deformity in the lower back. In essence, a 360 Fusion is a combination of an Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF) and a Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (PLIF).

Compared to traditional, “open” surgeries, the minimally invasive approach used by North American Spine physicians results in less surgical trauma, less bone and tissue damage, and results in fewer complications and a reduced recovery period. Note: we do see patients whose previous spine surgeries are no longer providing them the relief they need.

To determine if you are a candidate for 360 Fusion, contact one of our Patient Care Managers at 877.474.2225. If you have already seen a physician, send us a copy of your recent MRI or CT for review using the form on this page.

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Details of the 360 Spinal Fusion

A 360 fusion includes any procedure that places the interbody cage from the front (anterior) or the side (lateral) and then reinforces the fusion through the back side (posterior) with specialized hardware. The procedure is usually performed for patients with significant degenerative disc disease and/or a high degree of spinal instability (caused by fractures, for instance). It is also often performed as revision surgery, if an initial fusion procedure did not succeed. Fusing both the front and the back allows for a higher degree of stability as well as a higher rate of fusion.

Typically, the anterior approach is done first. During this part of the procedure, an incision is made in the abdomen and tissue is carefully moved aside to expose the spine.  At this point, a complete discectomy is done, also allowing for decompression of the neuroforamen.  Once the diseased disc is removed, an interbody cage filled with bone graft is placed and secured.  The incision is then closed.  The patient is repositioned so the physician can gain access to the back side, or the posterior. An incision is made over the lower back, and specialized hardware is placed posteriorly for stabilization.  If the patient has severe stenosis, a laminectomy may also be performed at this point.

Preparing for the 360 Spinal Fusion

Before pursuing a 360 Fusion, prospective patients should have tried conservative methods, such as physical therapy, chiropractic, and spinal injections. If those methods have not produced meaningful relief, you may be a candidate for a North American Spine procedure.

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360 Spinal Fusion Recovery

Usually, a patient will stay in the surgery center for 1-3 days after the procedure, and medical leave from work may last from 3-6 weeks, though light activities may be resumed much sooner than that. Your surgeon will prescribe pain medication as needed, and may recommend a brace and follow-up physical therapy.  The vast majority of patients report a significant and lasting reduction–or the complete eradication–of their pre-op pain.

While every surgery carries some risk of injury or infection, complications and adverse events are rare. Your physician will counsel you on these risks prior to the procedure.

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Arden S.

Condition: Herniated Disc

Procedure: 360 Spinal Fusion

“It now has been 3 months since surgery and I cannot get over how much better I feel.”

"I am now bass fishing on my boat every weekend without pain. Just this last weekend, I built a three panel wood fence with a gate, which included digging post holes. I kind figured I would be sore the next day but I did not experience any back pain."

Connect With A Patient

Some of our former patients have been kind enough to offer to speak with back and neck pain sufferers who are looking into treatment options. We encourage you to take them up on it! After we determine a treatment plan, we’ll connect you with a past patient who had a similar condition and procedure.

Connect with a Patient

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Our friendly Patient Care Managers are standing by and ready to help. Call us at 877.474.2225 or complete the form below, and we'll be in touch shortly.