Study design: This study reviewed 62 consecutive patients with chronic disabling low back pain who were treated with disc excision and posterior lumbar interbody fusion. Outcomes of treatment results were evaluated by a follow-up evaluation.
Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of the surgical treatment of patients with chronic disabling low back pain resulting from internal disc derangements that does not respond to nonoperative treatments.
Summary of background data: Chronic and disabling low back pain that persists for more than 6 months and does not respond to all known modalities of nonoperative treatment represents a difficult problem. No sufficient information exists in the literature regarding the efficacy of any specific treatment method for this group of patients.
Methods: During a 7-year period between 1984 and 1990, 62 consecutive patients were treated with disc excision and posterior lumbar interbody fusion. The clinical outcomes were evaluated by postoperative follow-up questionnaire, and the fusion result was evaluated by x-ray studies of the lumbosacral spine.
Results: Approximately 87% of the 62 patients responded properly to the follow-up evaluation. Eighty-nine percent of the patients had satisfactory results, 93% returned to work, and a successful fusion was obtained in 94% of the patients.