Skip to Content
Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Scoliosis Surgery: Anterior Approach
The anterior approach for
scoliosis surgery is done through an incision made in
the front or, more commonly, the side of the body. The anterior approach may be
used for middle or lower spinal curves.
This technique is better for severe curves, including rigid curves in
adults. But it has greater surgical risks than posterior surgery alone. Surgeons
often use both the anterior and posterior approaches when they operate on a
person who has scoliosis. Using this combination of techniques, surgeons can
remove discs in the spine and graft bone into the spaces. This is done to help
make the spine more correctable.
Other techniques done with an anterior approach use large metal
screws that are attached to each vertebra. Each screw has a large head with a
hole for the passage of a rod that is tightened at each level. A brace or cast
may be needed for about 6 months following surgery. This technique is not
recommended for children younger than 10 years because of the small size of
A new technique known as endoscopic spine surgery is being developed
and used. This involves making several small incisions in the chest or abdomen
and inserting a video scope and narrow instruments to operate. This method may
cause less discomfort and allow for a quicker recovery and a shorter hospital
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerJohn Pope, MD - PediatricsSpecialist Medical ReviewerRobert B. Keller, MD - Orthopedics
Current as ofMay 22, 2015
Current as of:
May 22, 2015
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics & Robert B. Keller, MD - Orthopedics
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Send Us Your Feedback
North Kansas City Hospital