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Monday, October 24, 2011

Laser spine surgery

    Laser spine surgery is a minimally invasive procedure that treats many painful conditions of the spine. This procedure does not require the spinal canal to be opened up; the surgery is done through small incisions made in the spine that are approximately less than a 1/2 of an inch. Consequently, blood loss is also minimal. Laser spine surgery is an endoscopic alternative that has replaced conventional methods of Spinal Fusion surgeries. By the help of laser light beams, surgeons are able to remove bone spurs and other problems like herniated discs. If you have endured Low Back Pain for months or years and have not experienced any relief through massage, acupuncture, or chiropractor visits, consider the many benefits of laser spine surgery - a quick, effective outpatient procedure with little risk and fast recovery times. Many patients feel immediate relief and recuperate from their laser surgery in as little as two weeks.

    Laminectomy is a spinal operation to remove the portion of the vertebral bone called Lamina. There are many variations of laminectomy. In the most minimal form small skin incisions are made, back muscles are pushed aside rather than cut, and the parts of the vertebra adjacent to the lamina are left intact. The traditional form of laminectomy (conventional laminectomy) excises much more than just the lamina; the entire posterior backbone is removed, along with overlying ligaments and muscles. The usual recovery period is very different depending on which type of laminectomy has been performed: days in the minimal procedure, and weeks to months with conventional open surgery.

    The recovery period after laminectomy depends on the specific operative technique, minimally invasive procedures having a significantly shorter recovery period than open surgery. Removal of substantial amounts of bone and tissue may require additional procedures to stabilize the spine, such as fusion procedures and generally requires a much longer recovery period than simple laminectomy. Most commonly, laminectomy is performed to treat spinal stenosis.

    A cervical disc herniation can be removed through an anterior approach (through the front of the neck) to relieve spinal cord or nerve root pressure and alleviate corresponding pain, weakness, numbness and tingling. This procedure is called an anterior cervical discectomy and allows the offending disc to be surgically removed. A discectomy is a form of surgical decompression, so the procedure may also be called an anterior cervical decompression. Cervical Fusion is almost always done as part of a cervical discectomy. The insertion of a bone graft into the evacuated disc space serves to prevent disc space collapse and promote a growing together of the two vertebrae into a single unit, with this 'fusion' preventing local deformity and serving to maintain adequate room for the nerve roots and spinal cord. Together, the combined surgery is commonly referred to as an ACDF surgery, which stands for Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion.

    Patients typically go home the same day as the anterior cervical discectomy and Cervical Fusion or after one night in the hospital. Most patients recover within about 4 to 6 weeks, although it may take up to 18 months for the fusion to fully set up. Patients should discuss relevant activity restrictions and rehabilitation with their surgeon.