Know your back surgery options

Know your back surgery options

Physical therapy, chiropractic care, pain medication and acupuncture may all help with back pain, but for those still suffering, surgery may be the only option. Discuss with your doctor which of the following procedures will help to get you back in motion.

Fusion: Surgeon joins vertebrae together, which restricts motion between spine bones and limits nerve stretching. Often combined with other procedures.

Laminectomy aka “decompression:” Surgeons remove parts of the bone, bone spurs or back ligaments to relive pressure on nerves. Often combined with discectomy.

Foraminotomy: Surgeon cuts away bone on the sides of vertebrae to widen the space where nerve roots exit the spine, relieving nerve pressure and pain.

Discectomy: A surgeon removes all or part of a bulging or slipped disc that presses on the spinal nerve causing pain. This may also be part of a larger surgery.

Disc replacement: This fusion alternative removes a damaged disc and replaces it with an artificial one between vertebrae and allows continued spine motion.

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