Study design: Retrospective, multicenter review of 96 patients who underwent L5-S1 interbody fusions through either a standard anterior retroperitoneal approach or using a novel device inserted through the presacral space (AxiaLIF) in conjunction with supplemental posterior fixation between 2002 and 2010.
Objective: To compare the radiographic fusion rates and adverse events associated with anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) and AxiaLIF techniques.
Summary of background data: Interbody fusions of the lumbosacral spine are frequently performed to provide anterior column support, increase the amount of surface area for bone formation, and facilitate deformity reduction. A number of different surgical approaches have been developed for this purpose including minimally invasive techniques.
Materials and methods: Patient information and procedural data were obtained from hospital charts. Multiplanar computed tomography images were evaluated by 2 independent observers to assess fusion success at 24 months using a 4-point grading scale. In addition to reviewing the medical records to identify any complications, all of the sites were queried regarding any device-related adverse events that may have occurred.
Results: According to the radiographic analysis, the arthrodesis rates recorded for the ALIF and AxiaLIF cohorts were 79% and 85%, respectively (P>0.05). The numbers and types of adverse events recorded for these procedures appeared to be similar although there was 1 serious intraoperative complication (iliac artery laceration) noted in the ALIF group.
Conclusions: The radiographic success and adverse events associated with AxiaLIF appear to be similar to that observed for ALIF, suggesting that this technique represents a safe and effective method for achieving an interbody fusion across the L5-S1 disk space when utilized in conjunction with posterior fixation.