Department of Surgery at Pocono Medical Center (PMC) recently performed
its first anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) to treat a patient’s
severe back pain. This pain is caused by natural and traumatic degeneration of the disc space in the spine.
ALIF occurs through a small incision made in the abdomen. “For
the right patient, ALIF is a great alternative to traditional spinal
surgery,” said Allister Williams M.D., a Yale-trained spine surgeon at
PMC who performed the procedure with the assistance of Maneesh Ailawadi,
M.D., General Surgeon at PMC. Through ALIF, damaged spinal discs are removed and replaced with temporary implants.
to ALIF are significant and include less blood loss, shorter surgical
time, and a quicker recovery, according to Dr. Williams. The
procedure is also significantly less painful than traditional spinal
fusion surgery, as ALIF uses implants instead of bone grafts from
patients’ hips. It is important to understand that not all patients are
good candidates for ALIF including older individuals with osteoporosis,
those facing an active infection or cancer, or those that are pregnant.
For questions or more information, please contact 570-426-2301.
Images from an anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF)