Lumbar Discectomy

Lumbar Discectomy & Neural Decompression (DND)

Indications: Low back pain, pain in the hips and/or legs, along with weakness, tingling or numbness in the legs.

The Lumbar Discectomy and Neural Decompression Procedure is performed in a surgery center and typically is accomplished over the course of 75 minutes to 2 1/2 hours depending on the anatomy of the patient, the complexity of the pathology and how many discs are problematic.

After being comfortably positioned on the operating table in the face-down position, the patient is given oxygen, connected to appropriate monitors and administered intravenous sedation to induce sleep. The patient may have a breathing tube inserted into the trachea or windpipe if considered necessary for safety during the procedure. This is accomplished after the patient goes to sleep.

A Thulium laser is then used to treat the posterior annulus of each symptomatic herniated disc and potentially some bulging discs. The procedure places sufficient energy into the annulus to turn off the nociceptors or pain nerves, char the annulus and sometimes shrink the bulge or herniation as well as seal the blood vessels extending into the annulus. These vessels bring compounds to the disc that cause further inflammation and pain in the area. This procedure is what relieves much of the low back and even leg pain as well as weakness, tingling and numbness in the legs. Lumbar facets that are symptomatic can be treated at the end of this portion of the procedure.

Completion of the procedure commences by injection of antibiotics into the disc(s), removal of the needles from the disc(s) and then placing a sterile dressing over the needle insertion sites.

After the procedure is completed, the patient is awakened and moved to the recovery room until discharged. The average time in the recovery room is about 1 hour.

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