LUMBAR DISC SURGERY
At RGVO, our doctors understand that your time is valuable. There is no time for any discomfort to interrupt busy days. Part of the repertoire of our surgeons is dealing with lower back and leg pain. This pain is often caused by spinal disc problems and can become very frustrating when they limit your ability to perform activities and do the things you enjoy. To manage lower back (lumbar) problems, your doctor may have recommended conservative treatment plans such as rest, medication, physical therapy, and exercise. Despite best efforts, sometimes the pain still won’t subside. Surgery may help alleviate the pain by treating your disc problem.
Your Evaluation – Your doctor will examine your spine and legs to identify the source of your pain and how your lifestyle may contribute to it. Various tests will be performed such as – tests for flexibility, muscle strength, and checking for pain or numbness in your legs or feet. Along with these physical tests, diagnostic tests such as X-Rays, Myelograms, CT, and EMGs may be performed to better understand your back issues.
Your Disc Surgery – Once your doctor has evaluated your back, the next step is in the operating room. Your disc problem may be corrected by diskectomy (the surgical removal of the portion of the disk that’s putting pressure on a nerve, which is causing the pain in your back or leg). Your surgeon may recommend 1 of the 3 following procedures – “Classic” Diskectomy, Micro Diskectmoy, or a Percutaneous Diskectomy. Don’t be intimidated or confused by the names of these procedures. The basic differences between them are the size of the incision in your back, how your surgeon reaches for your disc, and how much of the disc needs to be removed. The Classic and Micro Diskectomy require a hospital stay of a few days, as opposed to the Percutaneous diskectomy which is usually an out-patient procedure.
Your Recovery – Recovering from back pain and surgery is an ongoing process. How fast you recover depends on the type of surgery you had, your commitment to recovering as you work with your physical therapist, and following all the instructions recommended to you by your surgeon. The timetable given to those who are recovering is six months or longer before you can resume normal activities.