Decompression surgery for patients with spinal narrowing

Although not all people with spinal narrowing require surgery, nerve decompression surgery may be an option for individuals with this condition who have not found relief from conservative treatments. Symptoms related to nerve compression due to narrowed spinal nerve pathways can be severely debilitating and take you away from the people and activities you love.

While treatments like medication, physical therapy and spinal injections help many people with this condition enjoy a good quality of life, you and your doctor may begin to explore the possibility of surgery if you both agree that nonsurgical options have been exhausted. The following information about the minimally invasive decompression procedures performed at Laser Spine Institute can help you make an informed decision about the full range of treatment available to you.

Decompression procedures offered by Laser Spine Institute

The goal of decompression surgery is to access the spine and remove the displaced spinal anatomy that is the source of spinal narrowing and is putting pressure on nerves. Traditional open spine approaches to decompression surgery involve a large muscle-tearing incision that typically requires a long recovery time. As an alternative, the minimally invasive decompression procedures at Laser Spine Institute use a less than 1-inch incision, which means an outpatient experience with no lengthy recovery.^

When patients turn to Laser Spine Institute for decompression surgery, our experts may recommend one of the following procedures depending on the specific situation:

  • Foraminotomy. During this procedure a surgeon will widen one of the foramina, which are the passageways in the spinal column that allow nerve roots to exit and branch out into the rest of the body.
  • Discectomy. Involves the surgeon removing a portion of a bulging or herniated disc that has extruded into the spinal column.
  • Laminotomy. During this procedure a surgeon will remove a portion of the lamina, which is a flat bony structure that helps to form the spinal canal in order to relieve pressure on the spinal cord.

By decompressing the spinal cord or a nerve root, these procedures can help relieve the pain and discomfort associated with spinal narrowing. And because Laser Spine Institute’s surgeons perform them with a minimally invasive approach, these procedures are associated with shorter recovery times^ and fewer complications than traditional open neck or back surgeries.

In some cases, a facet thermal ablation may also be suggested. This procedure is used to deaden the local nerve in an arthritic facet joint, helping to reduce pain and other symptoms.

Explore minimally invasive options for patients with spinal narrowing

Each patient is different and nerve decompression surgery may or may not be the best approach for you. At Laser Spine Institute, patients receive a full diagnostic evaluation to determine the treatment option that would be the most beneficial for their needs.

To learn more about our minimally invasive approach to decompression surgery for spinal narrowing, contact Laser Spine Institute today. We are happy to offer a no-cost MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.