Lumbar Spine Fusion Rates With Local Bone in Posterolateral and Combined Posterolateral and Interbody Approaches

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Purpose:Posterolateral lumbar fusion (PLF) used to treat degenerative lumbar conditions still faces pseudarthrosis. Bone graft choice is a key factor; a traditional choice has been autologous iliac crest bone graft (ICBG), but complication rates are quoted up to 39%. Local bone from laminectomy eliminates ICBG harvesting complications.Methods:Two hundred forty-one patients underwent either PLF or PLF with interbody at a single lumbar level with a prospective, multicenter, randomized controlled trial only using local bone graft. Fusion was assessed with radiographs and CT.Results:PLF fused bilaterally in 18% and unilaterally in 28.8% at 6 months and 35.7% and 50.3% at 12 months, respectively. At 6-month PLF + interbody, 1.1% fused bilaterally and 11.7% unilaterally; at 12 months, 5.4% fused all three areas, and 50.8% fused at least one area.Discussion:Local bone fused substantially less than the “benchmark” ICBG.

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