Lumbar diskectomy is a minimally invasive back surgery procedure performed to remove any damaged areas of a degenerated disc of the lower spine. This procedure may be recommended when a disc between the vertebrae has become degraded and a patient is experiencing significant pain, weakness, and other symptoms.
At Hunt Spine, our highly-qualified spine doctors in Los Angeles perform this surgery as a minimally invasive procedure, using small incisions and the most advanced surgical technology. Minimally invasive spinal surgery involves less tissue disruption, typically resulting in a shorter hospital stay, less postoperative pain, and a faster recovery.
What Causes Degenerative Disc Disease?
Degenerative disc disease is not actually a disease, but rather a condition of the spine in which the discs can become thinner, bulge, or rupture, or the exterior of the disc degenerates. This condition can occur at any location on the spine, but it is most common in the cervical (neck) and lumbar (lower back) regions.
The spinal discs between the vertebrae can break down with aging, which can lead to degenerative disc disease in some people. Age-related factors that contribute to this condition are:
- Loss of fluid in the discs: Fluid loss makes the discs less flexible, reduces their ability to act as shock absorbers, makes them thinner, and reduces the distance between the vertebrae, creating pain and discomfort.
- Small cracks or tears in the annulas (outer layer of the disc). When this occurs, the nucleus (jellylike material inside the disc) may be forced out though the tears or cracks, which can cause the disc to bulge, rupture, or fracture. This condition is known as a herniated disc.
Who Is a Candidate for Lumbar Diskectomy?
This surgery may be recommended to treat sciatica (leg pain) caused by degenerative disc disease or a bulging or herniated disc. You may be a candidate for lumbar diskectomy if:
- You have significant leg pain (sciatica) greater than lower back pain;
- Non-surgical treatments, such as oral steroids, physical therapy, and NSAIDs (non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs) have failed to provide relief;
- An MRI or diagnostic test shows that you have a herniated disc.
Advantages of Minimally Invasive Lumbar Diskectomy
Minimally invasive diskectomy, also known as microdiscectomy, relies on advanced technology and laparoscopic surgical techniques to provide better results without the risks of traditional open surgery. Using a laparoscopic microscope for a clear view of the surgical site, this procedure involves:
- Smaller incisions
- No cutting through muscle tissue
- Less blood loss
- Less risk of infection
- Minimal suturing to close the incision
- Less post-operative pain
- Faster recovery
Our surgical team is composed of a highly-esteemed orthopaedic spine surgeon (Dr. Leonel Hunt) and one of the premier neurosurgeons in Los Angeles (Dr. Gabriel Hunt). The combined surgical skill set of the two brothers addresses every aspect of spinal injury and disease. We are committed to accurate diagnosis, surgical excellence, and exploring all options to provide the most appropriate, effective treatment.
If a degenerated lumbar disc is causing you pain, schedule a consultation with one of our doctors to find out if a lumbar diskectomy will relieve the pain you have been suffering. You can have confidence that your condition will be treated with the most modern, advanced surgical techniques at Hunt Spine in Los Angeles.