The needle is smaller in size than that used during a conventional epidural approach. The procedure is performed with the patient lying on their belly using fluoroscopic (real-time x-ray) guidance, which helps to prevent damage to the nerve root. A radiopaque dye is injected to enhance the fluoroscopic images and to confirm that the needle is properly placed (See Figure 2). This technique allows the glucocorticoid medicine to be placed closer to the irritated nerve root than using conventional interlaminar epidural approach. The exposure to radiation is minimal.
If you are using an old operating system, you may find that Google Chrome will allow you to visit modern websites without requiring an update to your operating system. Learn how to update your browser
The ILIF Procedure (Interlaminar Lumbar Instrumented Fusion) was developed to overcome the potential shortcomings of standard lumbar spinal stenosis treatments (. decompression alone and decompression with fusion), using a minimally disruptive surgical technique. Lumbar spinal stenosis is a gradual narrowing of the space where nerves pass through the spine, which can be a result of aging and “wear and tear” on the spine from everyday activities and/or resultant positional changes of the vertebrae. The most common surgical treatment for lumbar spinal stenosis is a procedure called a decompression, which involves removing bone or ligaments that are pressing on the spinal cord and/or nerves.
The ILIF procedure involves a minimally disruptive decompression procedure called a laminotomy, which involves temporary distraction (opening up) of the space between the spinous processes, and careful removal of only small sections of bone to release the pressure on the spinal cord and nerves.