XLIF: Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion
Lumbar Interbody Fusion (LIF) is generally employed to treat leg or back pain caused by degenerative disc disease. It involves stabilizing the spine by removing the damaged disc material and placing bone graft (sometimes in an intervertebral device made from plastic or titanium) in the newly empty disc space between the vertebrae. This helps to eliminate pressure on nerve roots while realigning the spine. Over time, the bone graft grows and connects the vertebrae. A Lateral LIF is performed through two small incisions in the side of the torso, bypassing major muscles in the back.