A lumbar disc herniation occurs when the soft, jelly-like center of an intervertebral disc bulges out or ruptures through the outer layer of the disc. This can put pressure on the nerves in the spine, causing pain, numbness, and weakness in the legs.
In some cases, lumbar disc herniation can be treated with conservative measures, such as physical therapy, pain medication, and epidural steroid injections. However, if these measures do not provide relief, surgery may be an option.
Surgical Procedures for Lumbar Disc Herniation
There are several different surgical interventions for lumbar disc herniation. The best approach for each patient will depend on the location and severity of the herniation, as well as the patient’s overall health.
Open discectomy is the most traditional surgical approach for lumbar disc herniation.
The surgeon makes a large incision in the back to access the affected disc. The herniated disc material is then removed, and the disc space is decompressed.
Open discectomy is a relatively straightforward procedure, but it can have a longer recovery time than other minimally invasive approaches.
Microdiscectomy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses a microscope to magnify the surgical field.
This allows the surgeon to remove the herniated disc material with greater precision and less damage to surrounding tissues.
Microdiscectomy is often considered to be the gold standard surgical treatment for lumbar disc herniation. It has a shorter recovery time than open discectomy and is associated with a lower risk of complications.
Endoscopic discectomy is a newer minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses an endoscope, a thin, flexible tube with a camera on the end.
The endoscope is inserted into the spine through a small incision, and the herniated disc material is removed using small surgical instruments.
Endoscopic discectomy is less invasive than open discectomy or microdiscectomy, but it may not be as effective for large or complex herniations.
Percutaneous discectomy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses a needle or probe to remove the herniated disc material.
This procedure is typically done under local anesthesia and does not require any incisions.
Percutaneous discectomy is the least invasive surgical approach for lumbar disc herniation, but it may not be as effective as other procedures for large or complex herniations.
A laminotomy is a procedure that involves removing a portion of the lamina, the bony arch that protects the spinal cord and nerve roots.
This can provide access to the affected disc and allow the surgeon to remove the herniated disc material.
A laminectomy is a more extensive procedure that involves removing the entire lamina.
This can be done to create more space for the spinal cord and nerve roots, or to remove a tumor or other lesion from the spine.
Disc replacement is a procedure that involves replacing the damaged disc with an artificial disc. This can help restore the normal alignment of the spine and relieve pressure on the nerves.
The decision of which surgical intervention is right for each patient will depend on a number of things, such as:
- The herniation’s severity and location
- The patient’s health status
- The patient’s preferences
Recovery After Surgery
The recovery time after back surgery for lumbar disc herniation will vary depending on the type of procedure performed. In general, patients can expect to stay in the hospital for one to two days after surgery.
Most patients will need to wear a back brace for several weeks after surgery to help support the spine and prevent further injury. Physical therapy will also be important to help the patient regain range of motion and strength in the back and legs.
The majority of patients who undergo surgery for lumbar disc herniation experience significant relief of pain and other symptoms. However, there is always a risk of complications, such as infection, bleeding, and nerve damage.
If you are considering surgery for lumbar disc herniation, it is important to discuss the risks and benefits of all treatment options with your doctor.
The Best Lumbar Disc Herniation Doctor in Rochester Hills, MI
Surgical interventions can be an effective way to relieve pain and other symptoms caused by lumbar disc herniation. The best approach for each patient will depend on the location and severity of the herniation, as well as the patient’s overall health. It is important to discuss all treatment options with your doctor to decide which is right for you.
Are you in search of the best lumbar disc herniation doctor in Michigan? If so, you can rely on Ahlgren Spine’s board-certified and fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Bradley Ahlgren. Under the care of our medical expert, you will receive the best care possible. You may reach our helpful staff at (248) 215-8080 for assistance. You can also schedule a consultation with Dr. Ahlgren using our secure online request form.
We look forward to serving you!