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ALIF without hardware ?

salty444ssalty444 Posts: 149
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:50 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
My Dr told me today that an ALIF using 2 cylindrical threaded gadgets between the vertebrae and BMP may be in my future. I asked why no screws, rods etc... he said it all depends on the patient. I have never heard of this procedure. Has anyone here had this? He said the 2 devices are tapered so it retains normal curvature of the spine in the lumbar area.


  • The AxiaLIF surgery has been done with just the Axial bolt in the spine and BMP. At least in Europe I heard of it. Here they use at least 2 facet screws. Mine is with 4 screws and 2 rods.

    The traditional style fusion uses what looks like barrels or spacers. Depends on the vendor. The barrels they use 2. Then a cage. Then BMP. I've never read of that done with no support. I was reading about a new procedure a couple of weeks ago. That does what you are talking about. But it was in testing phase with volunteers. Not in the mainstream.

    I'd be curious what the real name of it is. When you see him next get details and take notes. There are lots of new ideas out there that people would be interested to hear about. Mine was a somewhat guinea pig surgery with AxiaLIF.
  • It's not uncommon to have a one-level ALIF without instrumentation. The upside is you only have to have one operation and your back muscles are spared (not to mention potential problems with the hardware down the line).
    The downside is that uninstrumented fusions have slightly lower fusion rates than instrumented ones, based on the literature I've read. My surgeon also told me that an uninstrumented ALIF can take longer to fuse.
    Overall, however, uninstrumented one-level ALIFs are not uncommon. They are probably becoming less common because instrumentation is now considered the gold standard. The reasons for this development are not always clear. One thing is certain: there's money to be made by using expensive hardware (one screw can cost several thousand dollars).
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