Spinal Fusion

Good afternoon, and thank you for visiting my blog.

My name is Dr. Ramin Rak and I am a neurosurgeon with Neurological Surgery, P.C. Though I primarily specialize in techniques that treat brain injuries and tumors (like the Cyber Knife and GammaKnife procedures that I spoke of in earlier blog posts), I also complete complex procedures intended to alleviate spinal conditions. Last week I detailed my use of the X-Stop Procedure for individuals suffering from back pain and this week I will talk about my technique for treating a condition called spondylolisthesis.

Spondylolisthesis occurs when a damaged or fractured joint allows a vertebra to slip forward and pinch a nerve joint in the spine.

This pain will travel all the way down to the patient’s legs via the sciatic nerve. Surgeons perform a spinal fusion to treat this condition and alleviate patient pain. At Neurological Surgery, P.C. I am a member of the Spinal Fusion Team along with:

  • William J. Sonstein, M.D. F.A.C.S.
  • Benjamin R. Cohen, M.D. F.A.C.S.
  • Artem Y. Vaynman, M.D. F.A.A.N.S.
  • Donald S. Krieff, D.O. F.A.C.O.S.

My team and I perform the spinal fusion procedure to treat intractable back pain by fusing two or three lumbar spine segments.

We start by removing the lamina, which is the portion of the spine that covers the problematic vertebra. Next, the Spinal Fusion team removes any piece of bone that is pinching the vertebra, relieving any pressure and pain. A bone graft is then performed, which fuses together the two spine segments around the vertebra. Finally, screws and rods are used to hold the spine in place while the grafts heal. Once the grafts heal, they will fuse into place and keep the discs from slipping and causing future complications.

Learn more about the spinal fusion team and the PLIF (posterior lumbar interbody fusion) or spinal fusion procedure by clicking here to view a video demonstration on NSPC’s website. Stay up to date on my other neurosurgical techniques when you follow me on Twitter.

Thanks for reading,

Dr. Ramin Rak


Ramin Rak Spinal Fusion

Screws and rods are used to hold the bone grafts in place so that the spinal fusion results are permanent.