If you have been experiencing chronic back pain or feeling consistent discomfort in your spine, you might be considering spine surgery. Spinal pain, especially in the lumbar region (lower back) or the cervical region (neck), can be debilitating.
Approximately half of all working Americans report experiencing back pain at least once a year, and it is estimated that up to 80% of the population experiences back pain at some point in their lives. Worldwide, back pain remains the leading cause of disability and days lost from work.
Back pain and spine-related disability can affect people of all ages. Let’s talk about the various common spine surgery procedures and how each of them might be able to help your back problem.
Spinal Surgery for Relief of Back Pain
The spine is a delicate structure made of bones (vertebrae), ligaments, nerves, muscles, joints, and sections of special protective cartilage called discs between each set of two vertebrae. Sprained ligaments, ruptured discs, compressed nerves, and strained muscles can all lead to back pain that may require spinal surgery to completely fix.
Here are some of the most common spine surgeries:
Spinal Decompression and Fusion
Spinal decompression and fusion is performed to eliminate back pain and pressure due to a pinched nerve in the spinal cord and also to stabilize the spine. The decompression removes the compression on a nerve, and the fusion involves allowing two adjacent vertebrae to fuse (heal) together.
This eliminates the pain caused by the pinched nerve and/or the injured vertebral disc, but it also eliminates the possibility of movement in that tiny section of the back. Most patients report excellent results and greatly reduced pain.
A discectomy is commonly performed for patients with a herniated or damaged disc. In this type of surgery, the doctor will remove some or all of the herniated disc that is pressing against the nerves or spinal cord.
A laminectomy is a type of decompression surgery that relieves the pressure from one or more spinal vertebrae and thereby reduces pain in the spine. This involves a surgeon removing the lamina, which is the “roof” of each vertebra, in order to widen the spinal canal and reduce or eliminate pressure on the spinal cord or nerves.
The pressure that is relieved from a laminectomy is usually caused by bone spurs in one or more vertebrae of the spine. This tends to be caused by arthritis.
Spine Surgeon in the Lower Peninsula of Michigan
Injuries of the spine can be caused in sports, violence, falling, or car accidents. Other than these traumatic impacts, spinal pain can also be due to poor posture, obesity, or arthritis in the spine.
Normally, physical therapy combined with lifestyle changes and pain relievers can help patients to reduce back pain and inflammation and help to increase their mobility. However, when these treatments fail to provide relief, spine surgery may be recommended by your orthopedic surgeon.
If you are looking for an orthopedic clinic that specializes in the treatment of spinal injuries and conditions, trust the skilled team at Ahlgren Spine Orthopaedic Surgery. We employ state-of-the-art technology combined with advanced surgical and nonsurgical techniques to help restore your mobility and relieve your back pain for good.
Contact our friendly team today by calling us at (248) 215-8080 or fill out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to helping you find relief from your back pain.