Surgical Procedures Performed at Marina del Rey Hospital for Degenerative Disc Disease
There are two major types of surgery used to treat degenerative disc disease. They are:
- Decompression Surgery: Removal of the disc or fragment that is causing pain
- Stabilization Surgery: Spinal fusion
The types of spinal decompression surgery include:
Posterior Approach: This decompression procedure is performed from the back of the spine. Posterior approach surgeries include:
- Facetectomy: This procedure involves the removal of the facet joints that exert pressure on the spinal nerve.
- Foraminotomy: This surgery is performed when a disc fragment or bone spur presses against a nerve at the foramen of the vertebra. The procedure involves enlarging the foramen so that the nerve is no longer compressed.
- Laminectomy: This procedure involves the removal of either a part of or the entire bony plate called the lamina when it presses against the spinal cord.
Anterior Approach: With certain conditions, such as a herniated disc, the decompression procedure will be performed from the front of the spine. Anterior approach surgeries include:
- Discectomy: During this procedure, either a portion or the entire disc that's pressing on the spinal nerves is removed. A discectomy can be minimally invasive. In these cases, smaller incisions are made and the procedure is performed with the aid of a microscope and tiny surgical instruments. patients who undergo a minimally invasive discectomy will have a smaller likelihood of post-operative complications and a faster recovery time.
- Corpectomy (Vertebrectomy): in some cases, the intervertebral disc gets trapped in between the vertebral body and the spinal cord and, as a result, it cannot be removed using a discectomy technique. In this situation, the whole vertebral body is removed through a procedure called corpectomy or vertebrectomy. Sometimes bone spurs develop in between the vertebral body and spinal cord. In these cases, the vertebral body is removed in order to access the disc that is impinging on the nerve.
Stabilization Surgery: This procedure is recommended when the spine becomes unstable and shows abnormal movements due to the removal of a part or all of the spinal disc. In these cases, a surgeon will stabilize the spine through spinal fusion, which involves the use of a bone graft or a substance that stimulates bone growth. Tools, such as wires, screws, rods, and plates may also be used to enhance the patient's spinal stability. A spinal fusion procedure restricts movement in between the vertebrae and will keep the spine stable for a prolonged period of time.
Drugs and other Treatment for Degenerative Disc Disease
Regular Exercise »
Cutaneous Stimulation »
Epidural Steroid Injection »
Physical Therapy »
Lifestyle Modifications »