XLIF – Minimally invasive lateral approach to an anterior interbody lumbar fusion. Usually accompanied by posterior instrumentation.
ALIF – Abdominal approach to an anterior interbody lumbar fusion. This approach requires delicate manipulation of the major blood vessels located in front of the spine.
TDR – Total Disc Replacement. Approach anteriorly in the cervical and lumbar spine. Removal of the diseased disc and replaced with a motion preservation disc replacement.
Microdiscectomy – Through a small incision in the back, a disc herniation can be removed, relieving an impinged nerve root.
Decompression – Similar to a microdiscectomy. Through a small incision in the back, a nerve root can be decompressed from stenosis, or narrowing of the spinal canal, or where the nerve root passes through.
Fusion – This is a very broad term covering both anterior and posterior spinal fusions utilizing implants, your own bone graft, and/or instrumentation.