Semi-rigid lumbar spine fixation with PEEK rods as a treatment option for mono-segmental degenerative disk disease
- PEEK rods; Semi-rigid stabilization; Lumbar degenerative disc disease (DDD); Lumbar fusion; Chronic low back pain
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Long lasting back pain due to degenerative disc disease is one of the major reasons for reduced quality of life and work incapacity. In some of these patients conservative treatment will not improve back pain significantly. Therefore fusion surgery as a surgical option is offered to these patients. The main aim of this kind of treatment is the reduction of segmental motion leading to an improvement in pain. Rigid fixation leads to high fusion rates but may also contribute to stress shielding and adjacent segment degeneration.
Therefore a semi-rigid stabilization with PEEK rods may be an option because it is associated with less implant related rigidity and is a less invasive procedure. The aim of this retrospective study was to evaluate the improvement in back pain after minimally invasive semi-rigid lumbar stabilization with screws and PEEK rods in 45 patients and to identify potential implant failures during a follow up of two years. Six weeks after surgery the patients showed a significant improvement in their back pain, which persisted during the whole observation time of two years (p<0.01). All patients who were still in working life returned to their jobs without extended work incapacity. No implant related complication associated with the surgical procedure was detected. During the follow up time of two years no implant failure was observed.
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