Lumbar Microdiscectomy & Treatment of Sciatica

Sciatica Treatment Options

Lumbar micro discectomy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to alleviate pain in the buttocks or leg, commonly know as sciatica, caused by a herniated intervertebral disc.This minimally invasive technique is used to remove the herniated portion of a vertebral disc. It is 95% to 98% effective in eliminating leg pain (sciatica) caused by nerve root compression. The procedure is performed through a small incision on the back. An intervertebral disc sits between two adjacent vertebrae, acting like a shock absorber by redistributing forces incurred by the spinal column. The disc itself is composed of two distinct types of cartilage that form a self-contained unit. Damage to the disc, caused by wear and tear or sudden impact, can cause the disc to bulge, or herniate out into the spinal canal where the nerve root normally occupies. This can cause pain in the leg and buttocks, commonly known as sciatica.

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How Do You Treat Sciatica?

Sciatica Most patients experiencing Sciatica do not require surgery. Through soft tissue treatment, over the counter medication, pain management techniques and other conservative methods, many patients find lasting relief.  At DISC, every doctor responsible for carrying out a microdiscectomy reviews a patient’s unique circumstances to make sure the procedure is the right choice for them.

In cases where surgery is required, a Lumbar microdiscectomy for bulging disc removes the section of intervertebral disc that has herniated into the spinal canal, leaving the healthy portion of the disc intact. A small incision is made in the back. Muscle tissues are lifted off of the protective bony arch, called the lamina, and a window into the spinal canal is made. The nerve is gently pushed aside allowing herniated tissue to be removed.  This removal of tissue is what distinguishes the microdiscectomy vs laminectomy, where part of the bone actually needs to be extracted.  Without the obstructing portion of disc, the nerve root can comfortably occupy the spinal canal and should cause no discomfort.  DISC surgeons perform microdiscectomies in the ultra modern, industry leading surgery center at DISC.  DISC patients are dutifully cared for by dedicated staff and remain the top priority from admission to discharge.  This level of service helps reduce microdiscectomy risks and improve recovery time.

Lumbar Microdiscectomy is an outpatient procedure with a 95-98% success rate in alleviating sciatica.  While some microdiscectomy pain after surgery is to be expected, patients frequently feel discomfort associated with sciatica immediately improves following the procedure.  Six weeks is typical for microdiscectomy recovery time, with patients often experiencing significant improvement in overall comfort by that point.

What Does Microdiscectomy Post Op Entail?

Proper microdiscectomy rehab will initially involve a light physical therapy regiment of stretching and back strengthening to keep scarring of the nerve root minimized. Higher impact aerobics, such as jogging, can be resumed after three months. Six months after surgery a full range of physical activities is acceptable. It is possible to re-herniate an area after surgery, and so patients are advised to participate actively in a physical rehabilitation program. The DISC team of physicians help patients through all stages of microdiscectomy, from initial conservative treatment, to follow up rehab.

Microdiscectomy Video: Microdiscectomy surgery and recovery time explained by Dr. Hooman Melamed of DISC Sportsv & Spine Center.


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How Much Does A Microdiscectomy Cost?

Microdiscectomy surgery cost will vary based on a number of factors.  Severity of the damage, complexity of the procedure, a patient’s medical history, and other circumstances all have to be taken into consideration when determining overall cost.  The best way to get a better idea of the financial aspect of the operation is to speak with a DISC physician.

When Do I Consult a Physician for Sciatica?

Most types of sciatica that will naturally heal show signs of improvement in the first six to twelve weeks. Chronic pain in the leg and buttocks that persists for longer than 12 weeks should be evaluated by a medical professional. A Lumbar Microdiscectomy is a rapid, reliable way of dealing with disc herniation and pain caused by an obstructed nerve root. It has been shown to offer immediate relief from sciatic pains, and, importantly, allows the quickest return to an active lifestyle when considering debilitating sciatic pain treatments. DISC surgeons routinely perform microdiscectomies on an outpatient basis, with most patients returning home the same day. Take a stand against sciatic pain. Call today to schedule an appointment with a DISC specialist.


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