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Spine Surgery – Its Dangers And Complications

What Everyone Should Know About The Dangers And Complications Of Spine Surgery

There are three main types of spine surgery, Spine Fusions, Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis, and Bone Grafts.

What Is Spine Fusions?

When the vertebra is damaged or injured, this may be the result of deterioration, and swelling of the disk connecting the vertebra, and a maladaptive arc of the spine. Injury to the spine includes instability or vulnerability of the spine. This is due to tumors, or infections. Spine fusion surgery involves, halting the movement at the traumatic vertebral area, and diminishing pain in the joint. Spine fusions involve inserting screws, and metal rods in the area to stop movement, allowing the bone to fuse together.

What Are The Dangers Of Spine Fusion Surgery?

A risk associated with spine fusion surgery, includes not easing, or stopping the pain after surgery.

  1. After surgery, the vertebrae may not join together. This is known as pseudarthrosis.
  2. Smokers have a low rate of spine fusion success after surgery.
  3. Surgeons, sometimes use a pedicle screw to fuse the bones together when doing spine fusion surgery. There is a possibility, or danger, that the screws may fracture or become slack or free, requiring surgery to extract or adjust the rods and screws.
  4. Sometimes, there is a possibility the cages and earlier grafts could subside, or drift, requiring repeated spine surgery.
  5. Damage nerves could occur, due to spinal fusion surgery.
  6. A rare occurrence from spine fusion surgery is the loss of control over the bladder or bowel.
  7. The patient might experience a loss of stability, and feeling in the legs.
  8. Men may experience not being able to ejaculate.

What Are Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis?

Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis, (spon-dee-low-lye-sis) occur when someone experiences tension break in one or more of their vertebra that composes the vertebral column. Many years of stress to the vertebra weakens it, causing it to move out-of-place. This type of injury may result from playing sports, trauma, or genetics.

These are the risk of having Spondylolysis and Spondylolisthesis surgery.

  1. There is the risk that the symptoms may recur after surgery.
  2. The patient may develop clots in the legs.
  3. Infection and inflammation may occur.
  4. The patient may experience pain, at the operation site.
  5. Deteriorating spondylolisthesis bleeding, from the surgery, may occur.
  6. Another surgery may be necessary, due to a lack of bone development. This is prevalent with smokers.
  7. Damage to the blood vessel, and nerve may occur.

What Is Bone Grafts?

There are two areas, in which bone grafts are used. These areas are neurosurgical, and orthopedic. These two areas are essential in stimulating the bone, so they can heal. The other area is to hold up the skeleton, by plugging in openings connecting two bones. They are a vital part of spine fusion.

What Are The Dangers Of Bone Grafts?

Risks associated with bone grafts include:

  1. Bleeding.
  2. Pain.
  3. Infection.
  4. Swelling.
  5. Damage to other areas such as the jaw, and face.

For more information on spine surgery, whether you need it and what kind of risks are personally applicable to you, visit Joshua S. Rovner, MD – Progressive Spine & Orthopaedics.