Most cases of revision surgery are not due to mistakes made in the original surgery. All surgery concerning the spine is extremely complex as it is a dynamic structure that can deteriorate even after seemingly successful surgery.
The risks of spinal revision surgery are higher than the patient’s first surgery. There is a greater chance of residual pain and it becomes more difficult to restore the nerve function. It is also a greater possibility that tissues do not heal as well with revision surgery and there could potentially be a bigger risk of infection.
The complexities of the surgery mean it should only be performed by surgeons like Mr John Hutchinson, who has the huge level of experience, skill and compassion required to undertake such a procedure.
Revision surgery can usually be performed by making small incisions or using pre-existing incisions in order to minimise the invasiveness of the surgery. This also helps to minimise disruption to surrounding muscle and conjunctive tissue around the spine.
Around 2-10% of all spinal surgery requires some kind of revision procedure, a common cause of this is ‘flat back syndrome’ whereby the surgeon has fused the spine in a position which is too straight and does not follow the ideal natural curvature of the spine. Mr Hutchinson has the necessary experience to prevent these kinds of cases occurring in his own cases.