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Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF)

Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion is an innovative technique utilized to remove a degenerative discs in your lumbar spine. Using a minimally invasive approach this procedure is done from the front of the spine and creates a solid bridge between at least two vertebrae. The goal of this surgical technique is to alleviate pain, numbness, or tingling caused by a degenerative lumbar disc. You may be a candidate for lumbar fusion once we performed a detailed evaluation confirming that this is the source of your symptoms.

Conditions That Benefit From Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion

Benefits of Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion

  • Restoring damaged disc to normal disc height
  • Stabilizing the spine
  • Improve symptoms of pain, numbness, tingling
  • Minimally invasive approach to spinal fusion that allows patients to have a quicker recovery

Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF) FAQs

How is an ALIF performed?

A minimally invasive approach is used to access the front of the spine with a small incision made in the lower abdomen. The surgeon will remove the degenerative disc to prepare the space for the implant or cage. The space is evaluated for the surgeon to choose the best implant size for your anatomy. Sometimes screws or plates are used to stabilize and keep the implant in place.

Will I need screws and rods in my back?

Our surgeons specialize your surgery according to your symptoms, anatomy, bone quality. This will be determined and discussed at your consultation.

How is the recovery after surgery?

Patients are up walking pretty soon after surgery. They may need to take a small amount of pain medication during their recovery. Physical therapy will be expected to help patients return back to normal function. We expect that after 3 months, patients typically do not have any restrictions and can be functioning normally. Most patients are able to return to work 4-6 weeks after surgery.

Meet Our Spinal Surgeons

Dr. Thomas Schuler

Spine Surgeon
Founder of Virginia Spine Institute
Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Christopher Good

Spine Surgeon
President of Virginia Spine Institute

Dr. Colin Haines

Spine Surgeon
Director of Research

Dr. Ehsan Jazini

Spine Surgeon

Hear From Our Patients

“You have given me my life back. I am able to do everything I dreamed of doing because of you.”

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– Tammy W.

“You don’t realize how much pain you’re in until you don’t have any.”

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– Tommy W.

“Being able to return to life, it’s the best thing in the world!”

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– Robin S.

“I can’t say enough positive things about my experience with Virginia Spine Institute. This is the last back doctor I will see!”

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– Sunny B.

“Dr. Good told me he was going to do everything he could to prevent me from getting surgery, but ultimately that’s what I needed.”

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– Reed M.

“Over 7,000 miles of travel was well worth it to receive the best spine care in the world from Virginia Spine Institute!”

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– Omar A.

“Virginia Spine Institute didn’t tell me what I wouldn’t be able to do, they told me what I could do.”

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– Abby B.

“I’m back to living an active lifestyle after spine surgery!”

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– Barbara J.

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