Guideline update for the performance of fusion procedures for degenerative disease of the lumbar spine. Part 5: Correlation between radiographic outcome and function

Sanjay S. Dhall, Tanvir F. Choudhri, Jason C. Eck, Michael W. Groff, Zoher Ghogawala, William C. Watters, Andrew T. Dailey, Daniel K. Resnick, Alok Sharan, Praveen V. Mummaneni, Jeffrey C. Wang, Michael G. Kaiser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

In an effort to diminish pain or progressive instability, due to either the pathological process or as a result of surgical decompression, one of the primary goals of a fusion procedure is to achieve a solid arthrodesis. Assuming that pain and disability result from lost mechanical integrity of the spine, the objective of a fusion across an unstable segment is to eliminate pathological motion and improve clinical outcome. However, conclusive evidence of this correlation, between successful fusion and clinical outcome, remains elusive, and thus the necessity of documenting successful arthrodesis through radiographic analysis remains debatable. Although a definitive cause and effect relationship has not been demonstrated, there is moderate evidence that demonstrates a positive association between radiographic presence of fusion and improved clinical outcome. Due to this growing body of literature, it is recommended that strategies intended to enhance the potential for radiographic fusion are considered when performing a lumbar arthrodesis for degenerative spine disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-36
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery: Spine
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2014

Keywords

  • Fusion
  • Lumbar spine
  • Practice guidelines
  • Treatment outcomes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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