Learn something new every day
More Info... by email
Back laser surgery is an alternative form of surgery to open back procedures and uses less invasive techniques. An endoscopic procedure allows the surgeon to make small incisions in order to work on discomfort zones, which significantly shortens recovery time. There are various back conditions that may benefit from back laser surgery, and people who suffer from chronic pain should consult his or her pain management physician. Most of these procedures are outpatient and usually do not use general anesthesia. A narrow beam of light is used to make the incision, which may be up to an inch or two in length.
Some of the most common conditions that may utilize back laser surgery are spinal stenosis, herniated discs, and pinch nerves. Spinal stenosis is defined as the narrowing of the spinal canal, and the two forms are cervical, the upper part of the back, and lumbar, the lower part of the back. New techniques usually permit the patient to leave the facility after five days, which is relatively longer than other types of back laser surgery. Aside from the surgery, patients will be given a new patient evaluation, MRI review, diagnostic tests, time for recuperation, and a post-operative education before being discharged.
Herniated discs extrude into the spine, causing extreme pain that may affect the back, legs, and feet. Non-surgical methods may be used to relieve minor pain, but most severe cases could need back laser surgery to treat the problem discs by removal or shrinkage. This is generally outpatient surgery, and most patients are able to maneuver later the same day. Pinched nerves are painful because the pressure from other components of the back are against the nerve, which can cause sharp pain, numbness, and a burning sensation. Back laser surgery is usually suggested after therapy and other non-surgical procedures prove to be ineffective because surgery generally includes removing the initial source causing the pain, which may include the removal of a disc, bone, or inflamed tissue.
Patients experiencing back or neck pain should consult his or her physician about the various surgical methods as well as alternative treatments. Although the procedure is less invasive than other forms of surgery, the patient should always research all treatment possibilities because there are pain prevention and management methods that may relieve pain. The most common alternatives usually attempted before resorting to surgery are physical therapy, pain medication, and various steroid spinal injections.
One of our editors will review your suggestion and make changes if warranted. Note that depending on the number of suggestions we receive, this can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days. Thank you for helping to improve wiseGEEK!