Decompression surgery for patients with a slipped disc

Patients with a slipped disc, also called a herniated disc, who are experiencing debilitating, chronic symptoms may eventually consider a nerve decompression surgery for their condition. It’s important to understand that surgery is not always required for this condition. Many people are able to manage their symptoms with doctor-recommended conservative options such as rest, medication and physical therapy.

However, if weeks and months of conservative treatments do not provide adequate results, a decompression surgery may be an option to help you get back to a better quality of life. The goal of this type of surgery is to remove displaced disc material that is putting pressure on nerves and interfering with their normal function. There are different approaches to this type of surgery, from traditional procedures performed in a hospital, to the minimally invasive outpatient surgery performed at Laser Spine Institute. Learning more about the differences in these types of decompression procedures can help you make a more informed treatment decision.

Minimally invasive decompression surgery

In the past, performing a decompression surgery required a large muscle-severing incision. This required hospitalization, risk of complications like infection and a long recovery period. At Laser Spine Institute, our board-certified surgeons+ are able to access the site of nerve compression using a less than 1-inch incision. Taking a minimally invasive approach to decompression surgery spares muscles and leads to many benefits for our patients. For potential candidates, our medical staff may recommend one of the following minimally invasive procedures to a patient with nerve compression related to a slipped disc:

  • Foraminotomy. This surgery is designed to widen one of the openings that nerve roots pass through, called foramina, if it has been narrowed by a slipped disc.
  • Discectomy. This surgery removes the disc material that is pressing up against the spinal cord or a nerve root to relieve the associated pain and discomfort.
  • Laminotomy. This surgery removes part of a lamina, which helps form the spinal canal, to help decompress a spinal nerve.
  • Facet thermal ablation. This works by cauterizing the nerves in a patient’s arthritic facet joint, preventing the joint from sending pain signals to the brain.

These procedures are performed on an outpatient basis at our state-of-the-art facilities across the United States.

Reach out to Laser Spine Institute

Minimally invasive decompression surgery at Laser Spine Institute offers less risk of complication and a shorter recovery time compared to traditional open neck or back procedures.^

To find out if you may be a candidate, reach out to our dedicated team today for a no-cost review of your MRI or CT scan.*