Lumbar Laminectomy

Lumbar Decompression Surgery

Laminectomy is removal of posterior arch of vertebral ring. Lumbar laminectomy decompression surgery is done to achieve a more thorough decompression of the spinal cord. It is a traditional form of lumbar decompression surgery, which is useful in certain type of spinal canal stenosis.

Indication of Lumbar Laminectomy:

Lumbar laminectomy is done in cases with severe lumbar spinal canal stenosis. An MRI diagnosis of lumbar spinal stenosis and  significant symptoms of spinal stenosis are must to decide about this procedure. Following are absolute indication for a laminectomy surgery:

  • Severe lumbar spine stenosis on MRI,
  • Severe symptoms of spinal stenosis,
  • No relief with medical treatment and epidural injection,
  • Multi-level spinal stenosis,
  • Congenital/ Developmental spine stenosis.

Advantages of Lumbar Laminectomy:

  • Laminectomy provides thorough decompression of the spinal canal,
    • Better chances of symptom relief,
    • Less chances of recurrence of stenosis,
    • Better decompression in multilevel and Congenital Spine Stenosis.
  • Laminectomy is a more familiar procedure

Disadvantages of Lumbar Laminectomy:

  • Laminectomy is a more invasive procedure,
  • Laminectomy can destabilize spine, especially with preexisting spine instability and in multilevel decompressions.

Complications of Lumbar Laminectomy:

  • Dural tear: Dural tear happens in about 5% cases of lumbar decompression. Dura is usually repaired during the surgery and there are no major complications. An extra 1-2 days of bed rest is required. Dural tears mostly happens mostly in old patients with long standing spine stenosis as dura gets thinned out in these patients.
  • Infection: It’s very uncommon (less than 1%) to have infection with the current surgery protocols and use of advanced antibiotics. Patients with uncontrolled diabetes, poor nutritional status and major medical illnesses are more prone to develop infection. Infection is controlled with the help of antibiotics. In some cases, surgical wound opening and cleaning is required to get rid of infection .
  • Other complications: Pain is minimal after surgery due to combinations of pain medicines used during the surgery. Chance of developing paralysis is extremely rare due to advanced spine surgery techniques.

Alternatives to Lumbar Laminectomy:

  • Microlumbar Decompression: Lumbar decompression is achieved with the help of microscope and specialized retractors (e.g. tubes), similar to microdiscectomy. Microlumbar decompression can take care of majority of the cases of lumbar spine stenosis. It offers all advantages of minimally invasive spine surgery. For majority of spine decompression procedures, Microlumbar decompression is procedure of choice now a days. It is not suitable for severe and congenital stenosis.
  • Endoscopic Lumbar Decompression: An endoscope, wider than the one used for microdiscectomy, is used to decompress spinal canal. Some of these procedures can be done under local anesthesia also as day care procedures.

Recovery after lumbar laminectomy decompression surgery is a journey towards renewed vitality and freedom from pain. As a spine surgeon, I understand the apprehensions that patients may have, but I want to emphasize the positive outcomes that await them. Post-surgery, patients typically experience reduced pain and improved mobility, allowing them to resume daily activities with comfort and confidence. 

Our comprehensive aftercare support ensures a smooth healing process, and most patients are back to their regular routines within weeks. By choosing lumbar laminectomy decompression surgery, patients take a significant step toward a pain-free, active life. Embrace the journey to recovery and rediscover the joys of living without back pain!

Lumbar decompression and fixation surgery is a highly effective solution for individuals suffering from conditions like spinal stenosis, herniated discs, or degenerative disc disease. This procedure involves two crucial steps: decompression and fusion.

During the decompression phase, your skilled spine surgeon carefully removes any damaged or overgrown bone and tissue that may be pressing on nerves or causing pain. This process alleviates pressure on the spinal cord and nerves, providing immediate relief from pain and enhancing your overall mobility.

Next comes the fusion phase, which stabilizes the spine by fusing two or more vertebrae together using bone grafts or synthetic materials. This ensures long-term structural support and minimizes the risk of future complications.

The results are remarkable. Patients who undergo lumbar laminectomy with fusion experience not only significant pain relief but also improved quality of life. They regain the ability to enjoy their favorite activities, walk without discomfort, and lead an active lifestyle once again.

Don’t let back pain hold you back any longer. Consult with a skilled spine surgeon to explore the possibilities of lumbar decompression and fixation surgery. Take that first step toward a pain-free and vibrant future today. Your spine will thank you!

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