Discectomy or Microdiscectomy for a Herniated Disc
A Discectomy is a surgical procedure to remove herniated disc material that is pressing on a nerve root or the spinal cord that is one of the most common causes of lower back pain .
Before the disc material is removed, a small piece of bone (the lamina) from the affected vertebra may be removed. This is called a laminotomy or laminectomy. It allows the surgeon to better see the herniated disc.
What is a Microdiscectomy?
A microdiscectomy is a less invasive surgical procedure that uses an advanced microscope to view the disc and nerves for precision treatment. This enhanced view creates a sharp difference between traditional methods in that it allows the surgeon to use a smaller cut. This causes less damage to surrounding tissue which leads to better outcomes, faster recovery times and your recovery from pain in the shortest amount of time.
During a spinal discectomy, the surgeon removes the part of the disc that is herniated and is pushing into the spinal canal that are causing your chronic pain issues. Any loose fragments of disc are also removed leading to a better long term prognosis than previously experienced using prior methods.
Why should I have a discectormy?
We would only recomend a microdiscectomy to repair specific types of damage and to decrease pain and allow you to regain normal movement and function. All surgery has risks, cost and benefits so a prudent evaluation is required before any surgery on the back is considered.
When would this course of treatment be recommended?
- You have severe leg pain or low back pain, numbness, or weakness that keeps you from being able to do your daily activities.
- Your leg symptoms do not get better after at least 4 weeks of nonsurgical treatment.
- Results of a physical exam show that you have weakness, loss of motion, or abnormal feeling that is likely to get better after surgery.
Surgery is considered an emergency if you have cauda equina syndrome.
Symptoms of Cauda Equina Syndrome include:
- New loss of bowel or bladder control.
- New weakness in the legs (usually both legs).
- New numbness or tingling in the buttocks, genital area, or legs (usually both legs).
A discectomy could be the right treatment solution for your chronic back pain.