The most common type of spacer is called an interbody cage . It is a small metal implant packed with bone graft. The cage is porous, like a grate or a kitchen strainer, so that bone graft may grow through it and fuse with the adjacent vertebral bodies. The surgeon may also fill the area around the spacer with morselized (fragmented) bone, which helps promote fusion between vertebral bodies. A concentrated form of Bone Morphogenic Protein (BMP) may also be used in the area where fusion is desired. BMP is a substance produced naturally by the body to promote bone growth, and it helps encourage fusion.
The anterior divisions communicate with the sympathetic trunk . Near the origin of the divisions, they are joined by gray rami communicantes from the lumbar ganglia of the sympathetic trunk. These rami consist of long, slender branches which accompany the lumbar arteries around the sides of the vertebral bodies, beneath the Psoas major . Their arrangement is somewhat irregular: one ganglion may give rami to two lumbar nerves, or one lumbar nerve may receive rami (branches) from two ganglia . The first and second, and sometimes the third and fourth lumbar nerves are each connected with the lumbar part of the sympathetic trunk by a white ramus communicans .
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The ILIF Procedure (Interlaminar Lumbar Instrumented Fusion) was developed to overcome the potential shortcomings of standard lumbar spinal stenosis treatments (. decompression alone and decompression with fusion), using a minimally disruptive surgical technique. Lumbar spinal stenosis is a gradual narrowing of the space where nerves pass through the spine, which can be a result of aging and “wear and tear” on the spine from everyday activities and/or resultant positional changes of the vertebrae. The most common surgical treatment for lumbar spinal stenosis is a procedure called a decompression, which involves removing bone or ligaments that are pressing on the spinal cord and/or nerves.
The ILIF procedure involves a minimally disruptive decompression procedure called a laminotomy, which involves temporary distraction (opening up) of the space between the spinous processes, and careful removal of only small sections of bone to release the pressure on the spinal cord and nerves.