Spine Surgery

Introduction to Spine Surgery

Back pain is a haunting experience to many people. Prolapsed disc, degenerative disc, spinal code tumor, arthritis of spine etc can be some of the major reasons for the continuing back pain experienced by you. Though conservative methods of treatments like medications, physiotherapy, uses of braces etc. have been found to be very useful for reducing pain, it has not been found to be very effective for rectifying severe problems  like spinal code tumor, degenerative disc etc. For such diseases surgical procedures have been found to very successful. Generally risks associated with spine surgeries have been found to be very low, but it can become very serious and complicated in some cases.

Spine fusion

Spinal fusion is one of the most common surgical procedures followed for relieving back pain of some particular patterns. In this procedure the vertebrae of the spine are joined together after removing the damage disc between those vertebrae. This method has the drawback that the motion of the fused vertebrae will be limited to a certain extent. One important risk factor of this surgery is that this surgery often remains incomplete. An additional surgery may be needed to complete the goals of the first surgery.

Laminectomy

Laminectomy is a surgical process in which the surgeon removes the bone spurs or ligaments and part of the bones in the spine. This surgery helps to relieve pressure on the spine which may relieve the pain and other inconveniences felt by the patient. However, in a laminectomy the spine becomes less stable which may necessitate a spinal fusion surgery.

Forminotomy

Formaniotomy is a procedure in which the surgeon cuts the bones of the vertebrae near the passage of the vertebrae through which the nerve root exit to different organs of the body. This procedure reduces the pressure on the nerve roots which reduce the pain and inconveniences. But as in laminectomy, a spinal fusion surgery may become inevitable after this surgery as the spine bones can become unstable after this surgery.

Discectomy

Bulging disc is a condition in which a disc bulges and presses a spinal nerve causing pain and discomfort. In discectomy the surgeon removes a part of the bulging disc or the disc completely. Discectomy is usually done through a large incision. This can also be done through a small incision using tools which can be controlled form outside. Discectomy is done as part of a large surgical procedure like laminectomy or spinal fusion.

Disc replacement

This is a procedure in which the surgeon replaces the damaged disc andsubstitutes an artificial disc which allows the spine to function continuously as before. Disc replacement is now becoming popular as a substitute procedure for disc fusion.

Inter laminar implant

In this procedure a U shaped device is implanted between the vertebrae which allow the spine to function as before. This surgery is done as laminectomy and procedure for release of pressure on spinal nerves.

What are the benefits of spine surgery?

Surgical methods for controlling back pain have many benefits which make it most acceptable to patients. The benefits include increased fitness, activity and improved mood. This reduces the necessity for medications which may have side effects and ability to go back to work at the earliest and increased productivity. But there is difference of opinion about how far surgical procedure can be successful and who will be benefited from such procedures. So the general trend of the physicians is to go for surgical procedure only if the conventional techniques do not prove to be beneficial.

What are the risks of spine surgery?

Reaction to anesthesia, bleeding, infection, blood clot in lungs or legs etc are the probable risk factors associated with a spine surgery. Nerve damage, recurrent hernia of the disk, stroke, and heart attack are also probable calamities in a spinal surgery.

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