Definition of automated percutaneous lumbar discectomy (APLD)

An automated percutaneous lumbar discectomy (APLD) is a spinal procedure that removes inner disc fluid, called the nucleus pulposus, from a herniated or bulging disc. Once the extruded fluid is removed, the nerve compression should be relieved. APLD is considered a minimally invasive procedure because a needle and cannula are used to perform the operation, rather than a scalpel that opens up and exposes the affected portion of the spine. Laser Spine Institute does not perform this type of procedure; our minimally invasive discectomy is used to treat a damaged disc in the spine.

Components of APLD

An APLD procedure will be easier to understand once we thoroughly define each of its components:

  • Automated — An automatic aspiration device, usually a cannula (suction tube), is used to remove fluid from the disc.
  • Percutaneous — Passage is made through skin and tissues with a needle, rather than opening the entire body cavity up with a scalpel.
  • Lumbar — The lower region of the back, especially prone to degenerative spine conditions like a herniated disc or bulging disc. Sciatica begins in the lumbar spine.
  • Discectomy — The removal of the disc or disc material that has leaked into the spinal canal and has pressed on nearby spinal nerves.

More information about minimally invasive procedures

If you are one of the millions of people experiencing neck or back pain due to a herniated or bulging disc and have been unable to find relief through conservative treatments, Laser Spine Institute may be able to help. Since 2005, we have been able to help more than 75,000 patients find pain relief through our minimally invasive spine surgery. We offer a variety of minimally invasive procedures that offer fewer risks and shorter recovery periods§ than traditional open spine surgeries.

For example, we offer a discectomy as one of our minimally invasive decompression (MID) procedures. Our surgeons only remove the portion of a herniated or bulging disc that is pressing on a nerve root or the spinal cord with a small incision, therefore avoiding unnecessary muscle tearing or scar tissue. This procedure is done on an outpatient basis and eliminates hospital-associated costs.

For more information, contact Laser Spine Institute today. You can speak to one of our Spine Care Consultants and see if you may be a candidate for one of our minimally invasive procedures.