Pedicle screw fixation is a procedure that stabilizes and connects vertebrae in the spine to bone grafts to certain types of spinal surgery. These connections allow the bone grafts to fuse with the existing bone.
A pedicle screw fixation is usually performed with spinal fusion surgery to keep the vertebrae in a fixed position while the treated area heals. Often, they are used to fix a bone graft to the spine.
During the fixation process, pedicle screws are put into the damaged segment of the spine. Metal rods are then connected to the screws to hold the bones and bone graft in place. The bones then fuse together and strengthen. Afterward, the screws and rods are no longer necessary, but they are left in the patient unless they begin to cause pain. This is to reduce the necessity for invasive back surgery.
Patients report significant improvement in their pain, and some report their pain is eliminated. Recovery times can range from 4-6 weeks before resuming light activity to 3-6 months for a full recovery.