Spinal stenosis — minimally invasive decompression surgery for treatment
Nerve compression in the neck or back can cause local pain at the site of the compressed nerve, as well as radiating pain, weakness, and tingling in the extremities controlled by that nerve. For example, a pinched nerve on the right side of the lumbar spine (lower back) might cause radiating pain down the buttock and leg of the right side of the body. In severe cases, the compressed nerve may not be able to send strong signals to the muscles in the buttock and leg, resulting in numbness and weakness in the affected muscles.
At Laser Spine Institute, we understand the frustration caused by having chronic pain and weakness in your neck, back, and extremities. We also understand the confusion that surrounds so many treatment methods for neck and back pain. That is why we have created a minimally invasive procedure to help alleviate your neck and back pain, while still allowing you to experience a shorter recovery time^ and less risk of infection than traditional open back surgery.
Purpose of minimally invasive spinal decompression
The purpose of our minimally invasive spinal decompression is to relieve patient discomfort by reducing pressure on a compressed nerve in the spinal column. A nerve can become compressed for many reasons, including spinal stenosis, which is the narrowing of the spinal canal.
During a minimally invasive decompression, the surgeon will make a small, 1-inch incision in the neck or back, and move aside the surrounding muscles to reach the spine. Unlike the standard procedure of traditional open back surgery where the muscles are cut and torn, our minimally invasive decompression surgery does not disrupt the muscles or soft tissue surrounding the spine. Once the spine is accessed, the nerve will be decompressed by removing a portion of the bone spur or herniated disc that has become diseased and expanded to the nerve roots. Our minimally invasive decompression surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure at one of our world-class surgery centers across the country.
Minimally invasive decompression surgery and spinal stenosis
We offer two common minimally invasive decompression surgeries to help alleviate the pain caused by spinal stenosis: foraminotomy and laminotomy. Both procedures aim to relieve pressure on the spinal cord due to a narrowing of the spinal canal, or spinal stenosis.
For many spinal stenosis patients, our minimally invasive decompression surgery effectively relieves the pain of their spine condition. However, for patients with severe spinal stenosis, our minimally invasive decompression surgery might require a minimally invasive stabilization surgery to ensure that the spine is stable and to help prevent future spinal stenosis.
The difference between the patients who need minimally invasive decompression surgery and the patients who need minimally invasive stabilization surgery is the severity of the spinal stenosis. Typically, spinal stenosis is compounded by other spine conditions, such as bulging or herniated discs. In these cases, if the disc is so severely diseased that it must be removed from the spine, a minimally invasive stabilization procedure would be required to insert an implant into the empty disc space and stabilize the surrounding vertebrae of the spine.
If you are interested in learning more about our minimally invasive procedures to help relieve pain caused by spinal stenosis, please contact our team. We can help you with a no-cost MRI review* to determine the severity of your spinal stenosis and your candidacy for our minimally invasive, outpatient procedures. Let us help you take the next step to finding relief from your chronic pain.