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A microdiscectomy spine surgery is a type of minimally invasive spinal surgical procedure to remove any disc material that is pressing on a nerve root or spinal cord. The incision essential in a microdiscectomy is a little large than that of an endoscopic discectomy, however smaller than traditional open back discectomy. A microdiscectomy can be achieved as an outpatient procedure, with maximum patients being discharged on the same day of the procedure. It is very rare that a patient can be required to stay overnight in the hospital.

Traditional Microdiscectomy Spine Surgery Step-By-Step

A microdiscectomy spine surgery has following steps:

  • A microdiscectomy is performed via a 1 to 1½-inch incision inside the midline of the lower back.
  • First, the back muscles are lifted off the bony arch (lamina) of the backbone and moved to the side. Since these lower back muscles run vertically, they are held to the aspect with a retractor during the surgery; they do not want to be cut.
  • The surgeon is then able to input the spine by getting rid of a membrane over the nerve roots.
  • Operating glasses or an operating microscope permit the surgeon to genuinely visualize the nerve root.
  • In some cases, a small part of the inside facet joint is removed both to facilitate access to the nerve root and to alleviate any pressure or pinching on the nerve.
  • The surgeon may additionally make a small opening inside the bony lamina (called a laminotomy) if had to get access to the operative site.
  • The nerve root is moved to the side.
  • The surgeon makes use of small devices to go below the nerve root and remove the fragments of disc material that have extruded out of the disc.
  • The muscles are moved again into place.
  • The surgical incision is closed and steri-strips are placed over the incision to help maintain the skin in region to heal.

Microdiscectomy Success Rates

The success rate for microdiscectomy spine surgery is typically high, with one sizeable clinical study showing good or outstanding outcomes overall for 84% of people who’ve the procedure.

The scientific literature also points to some advantages for surgery, when compared with nonsurgical treatment, even though the distinction lessens over time in certain cases. One large study found that those who had surgical treatment for a lumbar herniated disc had greater improvement in signs for up to 2 years than individuals who did no longer have surgical procedure.


Potential risks of microdiscectomy

Microdiscectomy spine surgery has some complications:

  • Nerve root damage
  • Bowel/bladder incontinence
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Possible buildup of fluid inside the lungs that may result in pneumonia
  • Deep vein thrombosis, which takes place when blood clots form in the leg
  • Pain that persists after the surgery

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