Lumbar Laminectomy

Lumbar Laminectomy

Lumbar Laminectomy is a procedure designed to relieve pressure from the nerves. This is considered a decompression type of surgery where a portion of the bone in the back is removed to allow the nerves to function with less pressure. Lumbar Laminectomy can be done at one or multiple segments and can be accomplished by removing all of the bone in the back (complete Laminectomy) or can be done by removing only a portion of the bone in the back (partial Laminectomy). The idea behind these procedures is to provide more room for the nerves to help them function better. It is important to note that this procedure is not effective in repairing any damage that may have occurred to nerves and that it takes some time for underlying nerve damage to heal.

Typically, lumbar laminectomy patients will spend the night in a hospital setting and are discharged within the following days. One of the most common indications for lumbar laminectomy is spinal stenosis. Spinal stenosis is essentially a process where the nerves become pinched. There are many different causes of spinal stenosis, but the end result is the same: patients with symptomatic spinal stenosis will have back and leg pain which is typically worse with activity. The surgeons at Precision Spine Care endeavor to perform lumbar laminectomy using the latest techniques and minimizing incision length and recovery time. Risks are certainly present with this surgery. Please talk to your surgeon about this procedure.

Information on Lumbar Laminectomy

Patients who have failed conservative treatment and have pain in the buttocks, hips, and thighs or sciatica with imaging of the spine demonstrating narrowing of the spinal canal or a herniated disc are candidates for this procedure.

Under general anesthesia, your doctor would expose the spine and remove a small portion of the bone in the spine to expand the previously narrowed spinal canal. This relieves pressure from the nerves.

You may be in the hospital for 3-5 days for monitoring. You will work with physical therapy during that time. Some patients may need rehab after surgery. This decision may be made in the hospital or after your follow up with your doctor at the 6-week visit.

There are risks associated with any procedure:

  • Spinal fluid leak
  • Nerve injury
  • New back or leg pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Recurrent disc herniation
Prior to the procedure

  • Exercise is encouraged
  • Discontinue blood thinners such as aspirin, Plavix, Motrin, Aleve, Coumadin. Avoid weight loss supplements and fish oil.
  • Quitting smoking and/or drinking 6 weeks prior to the procedure is encouraged

After the Procedure

  • Your doctor may ask you to wear a back brace and limit your activity for 6 weeks as the spine heals. These restrictions include no bending, lifting, or twisting.
  • Contact your doctor of there is fever, bleeding or drainage from the wound.

Lumbar Laminectomy FAQs

How soon can I drive after the procedure?2022-03-04T18:30:51+00:00

It may not be safe to drive immediately after the procedure due to the effects of anesthetics and pain medications. Discuss this with your doctor.

The above information is for general education purposes only. Please ask your doctor specific questions during your visit.

Lumbar Laminectomy is a procedure designed to relieve pressure from the nerves. This is considered a decompression type of surgery where a portion of the bone in the back is removed to allow the nerves to function with less pressure. Lumbar Laminectomy can be done at one or multiple segments and can be accomplished by removing all of the bone in the back (complete Laminectomy) or can be done by removing only a portion of the bone in the back (partial Laminectomy). The idea behind these procedures is to provide more room for the nerves to help them function better. It is important to note that this procedure is not effective in repairing any damage that may have occurred to nerves and that it takes some time for underlying nerve damage to heal.

Typically, lumbar laminectomy patients will spend the night in a hospital setting and are discharged within the following days. One of the most common indications for lumbar laminectomy is spinal stenosis. Spinal stenosis is essentially a process where the nerves become pinched. There are many different causes of spinal stenosis, but the end result is the same: patients with symptomatic spinal stenosis will have back and leg pain which is typically worse with activity. The surgeons at Precision Spine Care endeavor to perform lumbar laminectomy using the latest techniques and minimizing incision length and recovery time. Risks are certainly present with this surgery. Please talk to your surgeon about this procedure.

Information on Lumbar Laminectomy

Patients who have failed conservative treatment and have pain in the buttocks, hips, and thighs or sciatica with imaging of the spine demonstrating narrowing of the spinal canal or a herniated disc are candidates for this procedure.

Under general anesthesia, your doctor would expose the spine and remove a small portion of the bone in the spine to expand the previously narrowed spinal canal. This relieves pressure from the nerves.

You may be in the hospital for 3-5 days for monitoring. You will work with physical therapy during that time. Some patients may need rehab after surgery. This decision may be made in the hospital or after your follow up with your doctor at the 6-week visit.

There are risks associated with any procedure:

  • Spinal fluid leak
  • Nerve injury
  • New back or leg pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Recurrent disc herniation
Prior to the procedure

  • Exercise is encouraged
  • Discontinue blood thinners such as aspirin, Plavix, Motrin, Aleve, Coumadin. Avoid weight loss supplements and fish oil.
  • Quitting smoking and/or drinking 6 weeks prior to the procedure is encouraged

After the Procedure

  • Your doctor may ask you to wear a back brace and limit your activity for 6 weeks as the spine heals. These restrictions include no bending, lifting, or twisting.
  • Contact your doctor of there is fever, bleeding or drainage from the wound.

Lumbar Laminectomy FAQs

How soon can I drive after the procedure?2022-03-04T18:30:51+00:00

It may not be safe to drive immediately after the procedure due to the effects of anesthetics and pain medications. Discuss this with your doctor.

The above information is for general education purposes only. Please ask your doctor specific questions during your visit.

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Call Us: 903-716-6389
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