With age and with some types of trauma to the spine, bone spurs can occur. These bony growths can put pressure on the nerves or spinal cord, causing pain and affecting your range of movement. Laminectomy, also known as decompression surgery, is a surgery that can help some patients with this condition.
During a laminectomy, the surgeon removes the lamina. This is the part of the vertebrae in the back that covers the spinal canal. As a result of this surgery, there is more room in the spinal canal and less pressure, which is often enough to relieve the pain.
Am I a Good Candidate for a Laminectomy?
If you have pain or other symptoms due to bone spurs caused by arthritis, trauma to the spine or age, you may be considering decompression surgery. In general, you are only a candidate if you have tried less invasive treatments and they have not worked. You also need to be healthy enough for general anesthesia.
You may also be a candidate if your symptoms are getting worse or are significant. If you are having trouble with bowel or bladder control or walking and standing due to pressure caused by bone spurs, your doctor may recommend this surgery to improve your quality of life.
Additionally, if you are having surgery for a herniated disc, your surgeon may also need to perform a laminectomy to see and access the herniated disc.
A laminectomy will often show the most improvement in leg pain and numbness. It is not usually an option for back pain.
What Is Recovery From a Laminectomy Like?
Once your surgery is complete, you’ll be moved to a recovery room. While still in the hospital, you will be given instructions about home care and will be told to move around. If you need physical therapy, you will be instructed about the next steps.
In most cases, you can leave the hospital the same day or the next day, though this will depend on your situation. At home, you will be taking pain medication and may need to continue specific exercises to strengthen the area. For many jobs, you can return to work within a few weeks. If you have had another surgery, such as spinal fusion, you may need to wait extra time before resuming work tasks.
Where Can I Turn for Questions About a Laminectomy?
Alliance Orthopedics has a team of athletic trainers, chiropractors, occupational therapists, acupuncturists, physical therapists and other professionals to help you address your pain, whether it is in your back, elbow, arm, hand, wrist or elsewhere. We have over 1,300 5-star reviews on Google and excellent testimonials. Many of our patients enthusiastically recommend us to friends and family.
Alliance Orthopedics has invested heavily in our facilities to serve you better. We have an exceptional rehabilitation floor and state-of-the-art technology that allows us to offer many services as well as X-rays on site. We have locations conveniently located near Routes 9, 34 and near the Garden State Parkway. To find out more about how we can help you Get Better, make an appointment with us today.