What to consider before degenerative disc disease fusion

Patients who experience symptoms associated with degenerative disc disease have a lot to think about as they consider traditional open spinal fusion. Symptoms that develop from nerve compression can include pain, tingling, numbness and muscle weakness. Relief is an urgent priority, but careful consideration of the potential consequences of traditional open back surgery is vital. Read the following article to aid in your decision of what surgical option to pursue.

Give it time

As tempting as it might be to seek immediate relief at the hands of a surgeon, keep in mind the majority of patients with degenerative disc disease never need to undergo surgery. Many patients don’t experience symptoms at all and the vast majority of those who do can manage their symptoms with a course of conservative treatment outlined by a doctor. Surgery should be the final option, and the choice should be made only when:

  • Conservative treatment has failed after a six- to 12-month period where chronic pain continued to persist despite pain medication, physical therapy, exercise and other conservative treatment
  • Your way of life is threatened when chronic neck or back pain threatens to permanently disrupt day-to-day activity at the workplace or at home
  • The condition is treatable after it is determined whether a specific disc space is responsible for producing symptoms and if fusion can effectively treat the problem

Before you decide to undergo traditional open spinal fusion

Here’s another factor to consider before undergoing traditional degenerative disc disease fusion — there is a safer and effective alternative in the form of our minimally invasive spine surgery.^ Laser Spine Institute offers a variety of procedures that are minimally invasive and performed on an outpatient basis. If you are considering traditional degenerative disc disease surgery, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn about our open spinal fusion alternative.

Laser Spine Institute is the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery and has helped more than 75,000 patients find relief from chronic neck or back pain. Our highly skilled surgeons use a small incision that does not disrupt the muscle or ligaments near the spine in order to relieve the debilitating symptoms associated with degenerative disc disease and get the patient back to the activities they love. To determine if you are a candidate for our minimally invasive procedures, reach out to our dedicated team and ask for a free MRI review* today.