Surgery for foraminal narrowing

Foraminal narrowing treatments can provide many options — explore them with Laser Spine Institute.

Foraminal narrowing, also known as foraminal stenosis, is a condition in which the foraminal canal in the spine narrows or constricts.

The foraminal canal is a passageway on either side of the vertebrae that allows the nerve roots to exit the spine. Because this is already a narrow canal between the vertebrae, anything that constricts this passageway, such as a bulging disc or bone spur, could cause a nerve to become trapped in the canal. If this happens, pain and limited mobility, as well as other symptoms, may develop.

If you suspect that you have foraminal narrowing that is causing a pinched nerve in your spine, you should consult your physician to determine the best treatment option for your needs. While many patients may find relief through conservative treatments, certain severe cases of foraminal narrowing may require surgery.

Types of foraminal narrowing surgery

Deciding to undergo spine surgery is an important decision and should not be taken lightly. There are several methods of spine surgery that can be used to treat foraminal narrowing. Take a moment to research some of the options before deciding which procedure is right for you.

The types of foraminal stenosis surgery available include:

  • Foraminotomy — Involves the removal of the substance (tissue, disc material, bone, etc.) blocking one or more foramina.
  • Laminectomy — Removes the lamina of a vertebra and may indirectly relieve pressure on a nerve subjected to foraminal narrowing. The laminae create the protective arch at the posterior (back) of the vertebra that encases the spinal cord.
  • Discectomy — Removes all or a portion of a bulging or herniated disc compressing a nerve root.
  • Fusion — Involves the use of metal cages and bone grafts to fuse together the two vertebrae surrounding the narrowed foraminal canal. Fusion is often used in conjunction with one or more of the procedures above to improve spinal stability after spinal components have been surgically removed.

Minimally invasive surgery for lower risk and shorter recovery time^

Traditionally, surgery for foraminal narrowing has meant an open neck or back procedure that required large incisions, a hospital stay of several days or more, and a lengthy recovery. Now, patients have the opportunity to choose a safer and effective alternative to traditional open back surgery.

Laser Spine Institute offers minimally invasive procedures on an outpatient basis that can treat foraminal stenosis and many other spinal conditions. Our skilled surgeons use techniques that have helped tens of thousands of people worldwide find relief from neck and back pain. These minimally invasive techniques eliminate the need for a large incision that cuts through the muscles and ligaments around the spine, leaving our patients with a lower risk of infection and complications and a 98 patient satisfaction score^.

Contact Laser Spine Institute today for your MRI or CT scan review.