Asian Spine J.  2016 Feb;10(1):52-58. 10.4184/asj.2016.10.1.52.

Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion for Management of Recurrent Lumbar Disc Herniation

  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, Al-Menoufia University, Al-Menoufia, Egypt.


STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective study. PURPOSE: To study the surgical outcome of transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF) combined with trans-pedicular screws fixation for management of selected cases of recurrent lumbar disc herniation. OVERVIEW OF LITERATURE: Recurrent lumbar disc herniation is a major cause of surgical failure, occurring in 5%-11% of cases. The optimal technique for treatment is controversial. Some authors believe that repeated simple discectomy is the treatment of choice, but approach-related complications can be considerable. Other surgeons prefer more removal of posterior elements (as lamina and facet joints) with posterior fusion.
The study included 15 patients who presented with symptomatic recurrent lumbar disc herniation who underwent reoperation through posterior trans-pedicular screws and TLIF in our department from April 2008 to May 2010, with a 24-month follow-up. Japanese Orthopedic Association Scale (JOA) was used for low back pain. The results of surgery were also evaluated with the MacNab classification.
The mean JOA score showed significant improvement, increasing from 9.5 before surgery to 24.0 at the end of follow-up (p<0.001). Clinical outcome was excellent in 7 patients (46% of cases), good in 6 patients (40%) and fair in only 2 patients (14%). There was a significant difference (p<0.05) between patients presenting with recurrent disc at the ipsilateral side and those at the contralateral side.
In spite of the small number of patients and the short follow-up period, the good clinical and radiological outcome achieved in this study encourage the belief that TLIF is an effective option for the treatment of selected cases of recurrent lumbar disc herniation.


Recurrent lumbar disc herniation; Transpedicular screws; Transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion
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