Five indications you need sciatica surgery

Sciatica surgery is typically considered a last resort for situations where nonsurgical therapies do not produce the desired results. But, for individuals whose sciatica nerve pain does not subside — or even gets worse — despite the use of medications, physical therapy and other conservative options, surgery may be able to provide much-needed relief.

When surgery might be beneficial

People who are considering surgery are encouraged to evaluate the potential benefits of a procedure — as well as how an operation might temporarily and permanently change their lifestyle — to make the choice that’s most appropriate for their needs. The decision to move forward with sciatica surgery is highly personal and varies from one person to the next, but the following may be good indicators that surgery might be worth consideration:

  1. Pain has stayed the same (or worsened) throughout multiple attempts at conservative treatment.
  2. Pain has made it difficult — if not impossible — to participate in normal daily activities.
  3. Pain has started to interfere with interpersonal relationships.
  4. Nerve compression has led to bladder or bowel dysfunction.
  5. Neurological issues, such as muscle weakness, have developed.

Other considerations regarding sciatica surgery

As with any operation, sciatica surgery is a major procedure that can significantly impact a person’s life. Before moving forward with surgical treatment, it’s important to evaluate what sort of recovery guidelines might accompany an operation, whether or not work or school will need to be put on hold, whether loved ones may be able to help pitch in with chores and activities and what sort of outcomes can reasonably be expected.

While evaluating what life might look like after sciatica surgery, many individuals discover that minimally invasive procedures offer a number of advantages, both immediately and in the long run. At Laser Spine Institute, patients who undergo our minimally invasive spine surgery are often able to be up and walking shortly after surgery and with no lengthy recovery.^ What’s more, our procedures have a lower complication rate than traditional open back surgery.

If you’re considering sciatica surgery and would like to find out more about our minimally invasive procedures, contact us today. We offer a no-cost review of your MRI* to determine if you may be a candidate for one of our outpatient procedures.

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