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Laminectomy Surgery

Laminectomy Surgery is a type of surgery that removes a part of the bone from the spinal canal. This is typically performed as a last resort or as a treatment for a severe back or neck injury. In order to perform this type of surgery, the patient must be put under general anesthesia and remain that way for the entire procedure. 

For a typical hospital setting, the administration of a Laminectomy is considered a fairly invasive medical procedure due to the nature of open back surgery and the removal of bone. However, at Deuk Spine institute the need for traditional Laminectomies has been eliminated through the use of minimally invasive laser surgery which drastically increases success rates, reduces complications, and decreases the amount of time patients spend in recovery.

What is a Laminectomy?

Frequently performed alongside a Foraminotomy and/or traditional spinal fusion, a Laminectomy involves removing parts of the lamina in the spine that may be compressing the spinal cord or spinal nerves. Typically involving a large incision and the moving of muscle, skin, and ligaments, Laminectomy surgery enables surgeons to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves by removing the lamina bone or bone spurs. The problem with this method is that it causes collateral damage to soft tissues in the area to reach the problematic region.

Laminectomy is performed as a treatment for Spinal Stenosis which occurs when, usually due to the age of the body, the spinal canal narrows and puts pressure on the important spinal nerves. Spinal stenosis is called cervical stenosis when it occurs in the neck area, thoracic stenosis in the middle to the upper part of the back, and lumbar stenosis in the lower back area.

Laminectomy-Surgery

When should I consider a Laminectomy?

A laminectomy should be considered for several reasons; this includes relieving the effects of spinal stenosis, which occurs when the spinal column narrows and puts pressure on the important spinal nerves.

Laminectomy-Surgery

A herniated disk in the spine is another reason to consider a laminectomy. These occur when the disc’s outer wall, the annulus fibrosus, develops traumatic tears (annular tear), allowing the jelly-like nucleus pulposus to push backward out of the tear into the spinal canal or neural foramen. The part of the jelly nucleus pulposus that pushes out through the tear is called the herniation. In many cases, this hernia can impinge on a nerve, giving rise to inflammation and irritation of the affected nerve

Laminectomy Risks and Benefits

Like all surgical procedures, Laminectomy has both its risks and benefits. One of the more significant benefits patients often experience after a laminectomy is relief from pain. 

Possible complications of Laminectomy include:

  • Bone infection
  • Nerve and blood vessel damage
  • Injury to the esophagus or intestines
  • Recurrent symptoms, including leg and back pain
  • Spinal nerve injuries causing numbness, weakness, or pain

others include:

  • Bleeding.
  • Infection.
  • Medical or anesthesia problems.
  • Spinal fluid leak.
  • Bowel or bladder problems (incontinence).

What to Expect after Laminectomy Surgery

To make the road to recovery easy and smooth, it is essential to know and understand what to expect after laminectomy surgery.

How long is the recovery time?

After the surgery, the patient will stay in the recovery room until they’re fully alert, breathing effectively, and their vital signs are stable. In most cases, the care team will have you walking once you’re alert.

Recovery time varies based on the specific procedure and type of anesthesia, general health, age, and other factors, but full recovery time varies from four to six weeks.

Will I feel pain after surgery?

Patients will experience the most discomfort in the operative site and its regions post-surgery. The care team and the doctor assist in managing the pain, usually through oral medication prescriptions. so the patient can get the rest they deserve. However, any abnormal changes or increase in pain levels could be an indication of a post-surgical complication.

Do I need to see a doctor after my surgery?

Keeping the follow-up appointments after a laminectomy is extremely important. Call the doctor if there are any questions or concerns between appointments. Patients are always advised to seek immediate medical care if the following conditions occur:

  • Bleeding
  • Breathing problems, such as shortness of breath
  • Change in alertness, such as dizziness, 
  • Inability to urinate or have a bowel movement
  • Chest pain
  • Leg pain, swelling, or redness, especially in the calf, which may indicate a blood clot
  • Change or increase in pain levels
  • Weakness or difficulty moving a part of your body

Why should you avoid Laminectomy Surgery?

Various complications arise as a result of laminectomy surgery. This includes; Bone infection, nerve and blood vessel damage, little to no pain relief following surgery, injury to the esophagus or intestines, leg and back pain.

Alternatives to Laminectomy Surgery

1. Deuk Laser Disk Repair: 

Deuk Spine Institute has developed a novel surgical approach using an endoscope and a specially designed microscopic laser that allows for a small incision, between 4mm-7mm, to grant access to the target matter without damaging nearby soft tissues. 

It is a minimally invasive alternative to laminectomy that works to remove the source of back pain without the removal of stabilizing joints, bones, or ligaments. Deuk Spine’s solution is peer-reviewed and accredited as a safe non-invasive way to treat spinal conditions.

A tiny incision is created to locate the obstructing material in the spine and remove them using delicate pulses of energy using the minimally invasive laser. This, in effect, enables the body to naturally repair itself quickly without the need for implants or longer recovery times.

Risks and Outcome:

Dr. Deuk helped revolutionize the treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis and other conditions in the spine by decreasing the relative risk of complication and increasing success rates. An average complication rate ranging from 5-20% at other spine surgery centers in the nation is typical. While at Deuk Spine, the current risk of complication is less than .5%. Deuk Spine results have been featured in several publications, such as this paper, and are recognized as one of the pioneers of minimally invasive laser spine surgery in the country.

Testimonials

“The surgery only takes about 1 hour. Throughout the entire operation, I did not feel a thing. I woke up and all my pain was gone. I am walking better than I have in years.”

“It was such a wonderful professional experience. Dr Deuk is the best in the world. I only have a little pimple-sized incision and absolutely no scars. My full range of motion is back and I can not wait to go back to dancing and all the things I have been so nervous about. I could cry, I am so happy.”

2. Discectomy Surgery 

There are two variants of discectomy surgery that patients can undergo; an open discectomy or a microdiscectomy. Discectomy is far more invasive than endoscopic laser spine surgery and as such has more complications, postoperative pain, longer recovery, and more scar tissue.

The main distinction is that an open discectomy features a larger incision, more normal spinal bone and ligaments are removed, more scar tissue and pain than a microdiscectomy. This procedure gives room for the underlying risk of nerve damage to the neighboring nerves of the vertebrae. The spinal column can also become unstable due to the removed bones, ligaments, and facet joints. In such cases, a spinal fusion is conducted following the discectomy to re-stabilize the spinal column, marginally increasing the patient’s recovery time. 

3. Spinal Fusion Surgery 

Spinal fusion can be done to treat painful disc herniations. This surgery is far more invasive than laser spine surgery or discectomies. The outcomes of fusion are better for the treatment of back pain and neck pain when compared to discectomy because the fusion stops movement at a painful joint. Fusions are harder for spine surgeons to perform properly and many spinal fusions are done with poor planning and technique resulting in bad outcomes for the patient. You can see a comparison of cervical fusion to Deuk Laser Disc Repair here:

Life after Laminectomy Surgery

After undergoing a laminectomy surgery, most patients will notice a gradual relief from their previous symptoms, including pain, weakness, numbness, and other diagnosed symptoms. However, the risk of potential complications is rampant in laminectomy surgeries, leading to follow-up procedures to correct the developing conditions. The removal of part of the lamina can make the spine unstable and restrict movement to certain degrees. 

At Deuk Spine Institute, we offer premium patient-oriented care delivered by world-class physicians. Our range of minimally invasive techniques is focused on preserving the natural wellbeing of the body and giving our patient’s a new lease on life. Contact us at Deuk Spine Institute today for a free consultation on your MRI scan. You can also visit our site here or walk into any of our clinics to start your treatment.

Cure your back and neck pain once and for all.

Deuk Laser Disc Repair has patients back on their feet within an hour, feeling zero pain
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About Deuk Spine Institute
World leader in Laser Spine Surgery
With world-class physicians on staff, the newest and most advanced technology, and a patient experience pathway that is unrivaled in it’s efficiency and and pedagogy of care, Deuk Spine Institute has performed thousands of procedures and achieves a 95% success rate in elimination of pain.

 The services we offer are not offered anywhere else in the world, and the treatments are curative, not palliative.  On top of that, Dr. Deukmedjian is personally invested in the well-being of each and every patient, and has spared no expense to guarantee the best possible outcomes.
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