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Thread: Bone Marrow

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Bone Marrow

    Any opinions on the use of bone marrow (from pelvic area) and fusion? I know BMP seems to be all the rage, but the surgeon I am seeing uses bone marrow.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    I know that they used our own materials in the past, but thought everybody had changed to BMP. Have you asked your doctor, why he didn't change over to BMP? I'm curious? I'm also full of BMP and just wondering how safe it is.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Orlando, FL
    My surgeon still uses bone marrow, I had a mixture of mine and donor used during my surgery. I never thought to ask why he doesn't use BMP. My fusion from my previous surgery is rock solid so I don't think it's something to be worried about of using one vs. another. Maybe it has to do with how old the patient is when they have the surgery or how many levels have to be fused?
    Age: 28
    Dx w/ scoli @ age 12 S curves T-40* L-42*
    wore night bending brace as teenager
    Curves changed to 50's plus or minus
    herniated disc L2-3, Discectomy October 2007
    fusion L2-3 November 2008
    Revision L2-3 Fusion, Removal of hardware August 2009
    Curves measuring 52 T&L September 2010
    Fused T4-L4, all posterior December 27th 2010
    gained almost two inches in height

    Before and After Exterior
    Before and After X-rays
    My blog:

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    In my 12 level fusion in 8/09, my surgeon used bone from my rib. Last week, he used bmp to fuse my 3 levels of non-union. My surgeon is a partner with Dr. Zdeblick, a dr mentioned in the article cited here by rich1752, a couple or so threads down from this thread. That would lead me to believe that many surgeons do not routinely use bmp.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Indianapolis area
    It may be an insurance issue. Some insurers will not allow BMP or will allow only a little of it because it is so expensive and actually not even FDA approved for long fusions, I believe. (It is used "off label.")

    Also, my doc said he would use both BMP and my own bone to get the best fusion he could. I took that to mean he would have more material to work with and also that autograft (sp?) might in some ways heal better than BMP (though I believe BMP is supposed to be faster).

    Finally, there are some side effects of BMP in various studies, so maybe your doc is just being very cautious about those or anything else unknown that could happen.
    age 48
    80* thoracolumbar; 40* thoracic
    Reduced to ~16* thoracolumbar; ~0* thoracic
    Surgery 3/14/12 with Dr. Lenke in St. Louis, T4 to S1 with pelvic fixation
    Broken rods 12/1/19; scheduled for revision fusion L1-L3-4 with Dr. Lenke 2/4/2020
    Not "confused" anymore, but don't know how to change my username.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    I think it is age related and fusion levels. Younger people fuse better, I think. I have a lot of BMP but also have some of my own bone mixed in "like a stew" as my operating report said. Also, my spine bone density was pretty bad even though my hips and wrist were above normal. But there do seem to be more cases of nonunion fusion levels in the older patients.
    Age 56
    Wore a Milwaukee Brace for 3 years in hs
    Fused L4-S1 for high grade spondylolisthesis Jan '09 in Indy
    Thoracic 68
    Surgery Aug 31, 2010 T3 to L1
    Dr Bridwell St Louis

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