Lumbar Discectomy Surgery:
Easing the Obstruction on Your Spinal Motorway

Fusion, in simple terms, means joining two bones, and in the context of lumbar fusion surgery, it’s about uniting the two blocks of the Spinal Working Unit. This surgery is akin to decompression but incorporates screws and rods for added support. Its primary objective is to address the exit foramen or tunnel along the slip road (Read More) while restoring the tunnel’s height.

This is an example as shown on an MRI scan

1. The Discectomy Process

  • Fusion Defined: Lumbar fusion involves the fusion of two spinal blocks, essentially creating a single bone unit.
  • Surgical Details: The procedure encompasses the placement of a cage, screws, and rods to bolster the fusion process.
  • Approaches: Surgeons may employ various approaches such as ALIF/OLIF (Front), XLIF (Side), or TLIF/PLIF (Back) based on individual needs and the surgeon’s expertise.

2. Surgical Techniques

  • Mini Open Technique: Most surgeons in the UK use this approach, which may include microdiscectomy (using a microscope) or tubular discectomy (using tubes).
  • Keyhole Surgery: The latest technology allows for procedures through a less than 1 cm incision, using advanced minimally invasive techniques.
  • Common Goal: Regardless of the technique, the primary objective is to decompress the pinched nerve at the slip road.

3. Post-Operative Care

  • Early Mobilization and Rehabilitation: Critical for recovery; you’ll receive guidance on physiotherapy exercises.
  • Precautions: General precautions, such as avoiding heavy lifting while bending forward and limiting prolonged sitting.
  • Walking After Surgery: Initially, it’s advisable to avoid long walks in the first two weeks to prevent wound complications.
  • Gradual Progress: Increase walking distance and activity gradually, following your physiotherapist’s guidance.

4. Recovery and Beyond

  • Personalized Care: Recovery is unique to each patient; follow post-operative instructions diligently.
  • Consultation: Stay in touch with your healthcare provider for monitoring and guidance.

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Note: Medical conditions should always be discussed with a qualified healthcare professional. This content is for informational purposes only.