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Iatrogenic contralateral foraminal stenosis following lumbar spine fusion surgery: illustrative cases

Faisal Konbaz, Sahar Aldakhil, Fahad Alhelal, Majed Abalkhail, Anouar Bourghli, Khawlah Ateeq, and Sami Aleissa


Lumbar spine fusion is the mainstay treatment for degenerative spine disease. Multiple potential complications of spinal fusion have been found. Acute contralateral radiculopathy postoperatively has been reported in previous literature, with unclear underlying pathology. Few articles reported the incidence of contralateral iatrogenic foraminal stenosis after lumbar fusion surgery. The aim of current article is to explore the possible causes and prevention of this complication.


The authors present 4 cases in which patients developed acute postoperative contralateral radiculopathy requiring revision surgery. In addition, we present a fourth case in which preventive measures have been applied. The aim of this article was to explore the possible causes and prevention to this complication.


Iatrogenic foraminal stenosis of the lumbar spine is a common complication; preoperative evaluation and middle intervertebral cage positioning are needed to prevent this complication.