Cervical Posterior Instrumentation & Fusion Performed in Houston, Cypress & Tomball, TX
Cervical posterior instrumentation and fusion is a surgical procedure that is sometimes performed to address neck pain and other symptoms caused by spinal fractures, spinal narrowing and other degenerative changes in the neck region. The goal is to relieve painful pressure on the spinal cord and nerve roots, then stabilize the neck. In some cases, the procedure is performed in conjunction with another surgery, such a foraminotomy, laminectomy or laminoplasty, to provide additional structural support to the spine and promote vertebral stability.
What Does a Cervical Posterior Instrumentation & Fusion Involve?
A common spinal decompression technique, the cervical posterior instrumentation and fusion is so named because the surgeon accesses the cervical spine through an incision at the back (posterior) of the neck. After separating the soft tissues and muscles in the neck, the surgeon may remove excess tissue, such as herniated disc material, or a portion of the lamina, a bone that forms the “roof” over the spinal canal. In doing so, the surgeon can create more space for compressed spinal nerves.
After completing the decompression portion of the procedure, the surgeon will insert small metal screws into the bones surrounding the spinal cord, then attach a strong titanium rod. To promote the growth of new bone and encourage the vertebrae to meld together, the surgeon will place bone chips (derived from the patient or a donor) around the hardware. The fusion process occurs gradually, and it can take up to two years for the affected bones to completely heal.
When Is a Cervical Posterior Instrumentation & Fusion Considered?
In general, spine surgery is considered only after conservative treatments, such as physical therapy and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), do not provide sufficient symptom relief. If you’re in this situation and would like to explore your surgical options, you can consult with R. Alexander Mohr, MD, a board-certified, fellowship-trained orthopedic spine surgeon who practices in Houston, Cypress and Tomball, Texas.
As an early adopter and strong advocate of minimally invasive spine surgery, Dr. Mohr incorporates minimally invasive techniques into his neck surgeries as appropriate. He can help you find the least invasive treatment approach that offers the most potential long-term benefits.
If you’d like to talk with Dr. Mohr, you can request an appointment at his office in Houston, Tomball, or Cypress, TX.