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Minimally Invasive Interbody Fusion Feasible in Obese

Similar clinical outcomes seen with minimally invasive and open TLIF procedures

Minimally Invasive Interbody Fusion Feasible in Obese

WEDNESDAY, June 11, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Minimally invasive transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (MiTLIF) is safe and produces satisfactory outcomes for treatment of overweight or obese patients, according to a study published in the June issue of the Journal of Spinal Disorders & Techniques.

Jian Wang, M.D., from The Third Military Medical University in Chongqing, China, and colleagues prospectively evaluated 81 patients (25 male and 56 female; average age, 55.3 years; mean body mass index, 28.9 kg/m²) who underwent one-level MiTLIF (43 patients) or open TLIF (OTLIF; 39 patients). Participants underwent surgery for lumbar canal stenosis (43 patients), spondylolisthesis (29 patients), or postlaminectomy instability (nine patients).

The researchers found that the MiTLIF group had significantly less operating time, less blood loss, and less postoperative back pain compared with the OTLIF group. However, the MiTLIF group had significantly longer radiation time. The two groups had similar clinical outcomes (Oswestry Disability Index scores). In both the MiTLIF group (42/43 cases) and the OTLIF group (38/39 cases) radiologic evaluation showed satisfactory bony union at the fixed level. The OTLIF group had slightly higher overall complication rates, with 17.9 percent of overweight or obese patients having perioperative complications.

"Although this technique needs a longer X-ray exposure time, it may still be a good option for overweight or obese patients," the authors write.

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