Document Type


Publication Date



This article is the author's final published version in Journal of Craniovertebral Junction and Spine, Volume 14, Issue 3, 2023, Pages 281 - 287.

The published version is available at

Copyright © 2023 Journal of Craniovertebral Junction and Spine. Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow


BACKGROUND: Lateral lumbar interbody fusions (LLIFs) utilize a retroperitoneal approach that avoids the intraperitoneal organs and manipulation of the anterior vasculature encountered in anterior approaches to the lumbar spine. The approach was championed by spinal surgeons; however, general/vasculature surgeons may be more comfortable with the approach.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to compare short-term outcomes following LLIF procedures based on whether a spine surgeon or access surgeon performed the approach.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We retrospectively identified all one- to two-level LLIFs at a tertiary care center from 2011 to 2021 for degenerative spine disease. Patients were divided into groups based on whether a spine surgeon or general surgeon performed the surgical approach. The electronic medical record was reviewed for hospital readmissions and complication rates.

RESULTS: We identified 239 patients; of which 177 had approaches performed by spine surgeons and 62 by general surgeons. The spine surgeon group had fewer levels with posterior instrumentation (1.40 vs. 2.00;

CONCLUSION: Similar outcomes may be seen regardless of whether a spine or access surgeon performs the approach for an LLIF.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

PubMed ID