Failed spinal fusion surgery sometimes requires salvage surgery when symptomatic, especially with postsurgical decrease in intervertebral disc height followed by foraminal stenosis. For such cases, an anterior approach to lumbar lateral interbody fusion (LLIF) provides safe, direct access to the pathological disc space and a potential improvement in the fusion rate. One LLIF approach, oblique lateral interbody fusion (OLIF), targets the oblique lateral window of the intervertebral discs to achieve successful lateral interbody fusion. The current technical note describes spinal revision surgery using the OLIF procedure.
The subjects were patients with leg pain and/or lower back pain derived from decreased intervertebral height followed by foraminal stenosis due to failed spinal fusion surgery. These patients underwent additional OLIF surgery and posterior fusion with no additional posterior direct decompression. Their outcomes were evaluated using the Japanese Orthopaedic Association (JOA) scores at baseline and final follow-up. Bony union was also evaluated using computed tomography images at final follow-up. Six subjects were evaluated, with two representative cases described in detail. Four patients had an adjacent segment disorder, and the other two patients had pseudarthrosis due to postoperative infection. The mean JOA score improved from 5.7 ± 5.4 to 21.2 ± 2.3, with a mean recovery rate of 65.0%. All cases showed intervertebral bony union.
We introduced a salvage strategy for failed posterior spine fusion surgery cases using the OLIF procedure. Patients effectively achieved recovered intervertebral and foraminal height with no additional posterior direct decompression.