Oblique Lateral Lumbar Interbody Fusion: OLIF
Advancements in surgical techniques and instrumentation have led to minimally invasive methods to achieve interbody fusion. The oblique lateral interbody fusion procedure represents a minimally invasive modification of the traditional anterolateral approach to the lumbar spine that allows quicker mobilization and less post-operative pain. The dissection plane is extraperitoneal and provides access to the discs anterior to the psoas muscle. This anterolateral corridor minimizes psoas-related injury, with early evidence of less post-operative lumbar plexus- and psoas-related morbidity, particularly at L4-5 which may be difficult to access via the direct lateral approach. This technique uniquely permits anterior access to L5-S1, which is not accessible using the lateral approach. Additional benefits of this technique include high fusion rates, indirect decompression, and deformity correction via a minimally invasive procedure. We review the history and evolution of this procedure and provide a detailed surgical technique to perform this minimally invasive psoas-sparing retroperitoneal approach to access the ventral lumbar spine.
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