Laser Spine Institute treatment options for degenerative joint disease

Patients with degenerative joint disease, also called osteoarthritis, that is affecting their spinal column, can turn to Laser Spine Institute for minimally invasive surgical treatment options. Although many patients find relief through the use of conservative treatments such as physical therapy and medications, some patients have symptoms that don’t improve over months of nonsurgical treatment. At this point, one of our minimally invasive surgical procedures might be an appropriate option.

On this page, we’ll provide a brief overview of the approaches that we use to treat the effects of degenerative joint disease.

Facet thermal ablation

This procedure is performed on the facet joints of the spine, often in conjunction with one of our other minimally invasive procedures. When the nerves within the joint are inflamed by degenerative joint disease, they can cause pain and other symptoms. Deadening them can be an effective means of stopping the discomfort, similar to a dental root canal. Our surgeons can complete the process of cleaning the joint and deadening the nerve using a minimally invasive outpatient approach.


This procedure involves widening one of the foramina, which are the small openings that allow nerve roots to exit the spinal column and travel to the rest of the body. These canals can become smaller through the development of bone spurs as degenerative joint disease progresses, which can in turn lead to the compression of nerve roots. Our board-certified+ surgeons can widen a foramen to relieve the associated symptoms.

Our surgeons also perform a minimally invasive laminotomy, which involves the removal of part of a vertebral lamina. This gives the spinal cord more space and can potentially reduce the issues associated with compression.

Minimally invasive stabilization

In more severe cases, our surgeons can perform minimally invasive stabilization surgeries, which is our outpatient alternative to spinal fusion. Such procedures join adjacent vertebrae, thereby helping to control the motions of the joints in between the vertebrae that cause pain. As with our other procedures, this stabilization is performed in a minimally invasive manner, using small incisions and requiring no overnight hospital stay.^ This is in comparison to more invasive traditional open spine fusions that require patients to remain in the hospital for two to five days.

Contact Laser Spine Institute today to learn more about our treatment options for degenerative joint disease that offer a shorter recovery time and less risk of complication compared to traditional open spine surgery.^

We are happy to provide a free MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.