J. Alex Thomas, Cristiano Menezes, Aaron J. Buckland, Kaveh Khajavi, Kimberly Ashayeri, Brett A. Braly, Brian Kwon, Ivan Cheng, Pedro Berjano

August 2022, pp 1 - 8 Supplement Article Read Full Article 10.1007/s00586-022-07229-4

First Online: 01 August 2022


To provide definitions and a conceptual framework for single position surgery (SPS) applied to circumferential fusion of the lumbar spine.


Narrative literature review and experts’ opinion.


Two major limitations of lateral lumbar interbody fusion (LLIF) have been (a) a perceived need to reposition the patient to the prone position for posterior fixation, and (b) the lack of a robust solution for fusion at the L5/S1 level. Recently, two strategies for performing single-position circumferential lumbar spinal fusion have been described. The combination of anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) in the lateral decubitus position (LALIF), LLIF and percutaneous pedicle screw fixation (pPSF) in the lateral decubitus position is known as lateral single-position surgery (LSPS). Prone LLIF (PLLIF) involves transpsoas LLIF done in the prone position that is more familiar for surgeons to then implant pedicle screw fixation. This can be referred to as prone single-position surgery (PSPS). In this review, we describe the evolution of and rationale for single-position spinal surgery. Pertinent studies validating LSPS and PSPS are reviewed and future questions regarding the future of these techniques are posed. Lastly, we present an algorithm for single-position surgery that describes the utility of LALIF, LLIF and PLLIF in the treatment of patients requiring AP lumbar fusions.


Single position surgery in circumferential fusion of the lumbar spine includes posterior fixation in association with any of the following: lateral position LLIF, prone position LLIF, lateral position ALIF, and their combination (lateral position LLIF+ALIF). Preliminary studies have validated these methods.

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