Surgical options for degenerative joint disease

Degenerative joint disease (DJD) surgery is a last resort treatment for patients who are suffering from pain and discomfort associated with conditions like osteoarthritis or spondylosis. These conditions deteriorate the facet joints in the spine that allow the vertebrae to move and, ultimately, the spine to bend.

These conditions can often be treated with conservative care that focuses on lengthening the spine and creating space between the vertebrae for the joints to move. Such treatments include physical therapy, chiropractic care, stretching, range of motion exercises and yoga as well as pain medication that reduce the symptoms while the joints heal.

Sometimes, several weeks or months of these conservative treatments do not offer pain relief and a patient is left with a decision of whether or not to undergo degenerative joint disease surgery. If you find yourself in a situation where spine surgery is your last resort for pain relief, we encourage you to reach out to the dedicated team at Laser Spine Institute.

We can offer a free MRI review* to help you find a clinically appropriate alternative to open neck or back surgery.^ For more information about the surgery options available for your degenerative joint disease and to find out if you are a potential candidate for our outpatient surgery, reach out to Laser Spine Institute today. Let us help you take the next step on your journey to pain relief.

Types of degenerative joint disease surgery available

When researching the surgery option that is right for you, it is important to be aware of the main surgery options available to treat your condition. Surgeries that may be useful include:

  • Removal of bone spurs. These bony growths often develop in response to contact between two vertebrae due to the deterioration of the joints and cartilage that space the bones. The growths may protrude into the spinal canal, impacting the spinal cord or nerve roots. Removal of bone spurs can be performed as a traditional open back surgery or as a minimally invasive surgery.
  • Minimally invasive procedure. This procedure involves the use of a camera, small instruments and suction device to trim protruding tissue and release an impacted nerve root.
  • Osteotomy. An osteotomy performed on the spine is a relatively rare occurrence and is a major undertaking. It involves cutting or breaking the vertebrae to address the spine’s alignment.
  • Facet replacement. The complete replacement of a facet joint (one of the joints located between the vertebrae) is also possible.

The minimally invasive procedures at Laser Spine Institute offer no lengthy recovery and a patient satisfaction score of 98.^ In order to reach the damaged joint and vertebra, one of our board-certified+ surgeons will gently cut a small incision and move around the surrounding muscles, not cut and tear them like traditional open back surgery requires.

Once the spine is accessed, two options may happen depending on the severity of the joint damage — either the bone spurs and extra growths will be removed or the entire vertebra will be removed and the spine will be stabilized with bone grafts and other stabilization material. Contact our team today to discuss your options for minimally invasive spine surgery. We are eager to help you on your road to recovery.