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Microdiscectomy Surgery

The human spinal column is made up of multiple vertebrae (spinal bones). The spinal cord travels via the spinal column, and these bones protect it from injury. There are discs between each vertebra that provide cushioning and support. Nerve roots come out of the spinal cord through the foramen, which are small openings in the bones. The nerve roots function to deliver and receive signals to and from the body. The spinal cord transports impulses to and from the brain.

The outer wall of intervertebral discs can sometimes dry out and weaken due to injury or aging causing the soft inner disc material to protrude out. This is called a herniated or bulging disc. A herniated disc can stress the spinal cord, causing symptoms such as tingling, pain, or weakness in an adjacent body part.

In such a case, Spine Specialists in Hyderabad at Arete Hospitals recommend discectomy only if medication and physical therapy do not relieve the symptoms. Discectomy can be performed in two ways: open or minimally invasive. Microdiscectomy is a minimally invasive discectomy surgery.

Arete Hospitals is a multispecialty hospital famed for providing the best possible comprehensive care to patients with herniated discs, degenerated discs, or spinal stenosis. It staffs leading spine surgeons who ensure the most effective treatment results. Microdiscectomy is one of their expertise. 

Benefits of Microdiscectomy Treatment

Following are some of the advantages of microdiscectomy over open discectomy:

  • Less muscle and soft tissue damage
  • Reduced recovery time
  • Minimal postoperative pain and discomfort
  • Minimal risks and complications
  • Relief from spinal nerves or cord compression and its associated symptoms
  • Prevention of disc deterioration
  • Spinal stabilisation (if an interspinous distractor is used).

What is a Microdiscectomy?

A discectomy is surgery to cut out a herniated or degenerative disc of the spine. Microdiscectomy is a minimally invasive alternative to open discectomy surgery. It is a type of Spinal Decompression Surgery in Hyderabad designed to release pressure off the spinal cord or a nerve root that gets pressed by a herniated or worn-out disc in the spine. 

This surgical approach is usually suggested by Microdiscectomy Doctors in Hyderabad if medicine or physical therapy fails to treat back or leg pain or if the patient exhibits evidence of nerve injury, such as loss of feeling or weakness in the legs.

Ideal Candidates for Microdiscectomy Surgery

  • Patients experiencing severe pain and discomfort in the back or legs
  • Spinal disc patients with chronic pain
  • Patients who do not respond well to nonsurgical treatments
  • Patients concerned about medication dependence
  • People who live an active lifestyle
  • Patients who are in good general health.

If you believe you may be a candidate for Microdiscectomy Surgery in Hyderabad and suffering from a herniated or bulging disc in the spine, it's essential to consult with a spine surgeon at Arete Hospitals, to discuss your specific condition and treatment options. They can provide you with personalised guidance and help you make an informed decision about your healthcare.

Before Microdiscectomy Surgery

Once a surgery date has been decided, the patient needs to get a medical clearance. An appointment is necessary with a primary care physician to confirm that any pre-existing medical concerns have been addressed and that the patient is ready for surgery.

The hospital will contact the patient before surgery. Patients will be advised when they must report to the hospital and stop eating and drinking before surgery. If patients don't eat or drink anything after midnight, they will be ready for surgery the next day. Prescribed medications can be taken with small sips of water in those couple of hours before surgery.

Furthermore, the patient is recommended to:

  • Take a shower the morning of the procedure
  • It is acceptable to wash the hair on the morning of surgery. Avoid using mousse, gel, or hairspray
  • Wear no make-up or jewellery
  • Dress comfortably in loose-fitting clothes
  • Arrange for someone for a ride home after surgery
  • Bring no valuables to the hospital.

What does Microdiscectomy Involve?

A microdiscectomy can be performed anywhere along the spine, from the cervical (neck) to the lumbar (lower back). However, it’s most common in the lumbar region. It is performed under general anesthesia and might take between 1 and 2 hours, depending on the approach and surgical technique used.

During the Microdiscectomy Surgery in Hyderabad, the herniated disc is reached from the posterior, or back, of the spine. A section of the lamina is removed to gain access to the disc. The lamina is the outside side of the spinal canal that protects the spinal cord. Depending on the situation, one (single-level) or several (multi-level) discs may be removed to relieve pressure on the spinal cord.

A small skin incision on the back is created for the minimally invasive method, also known as microdiscectomy. There are three techniques by which microdiscectomy can be performed:

  1. Midline microdiscectomy- Here, the surgeon makes the 1-2-inch-long vertical cut in the back. Through the incision, the surgeon lifts the muscles surrounding the vertebrae and uses surgical retractors to hold apart tissue layers throughout the surgery.
  2. Tubular microdiscectomy- The surgeon makes a small incision at the back to insert a series of small tubes or muscle dilators. These tubes create a corridor through muscles.
  3. Micro-endoscopic discectomy- In this surgery, a keyhole incision is made by a Spine Surgeon in Hyderabad to insert a tiny tube between the vertebrae and into the space around the injured disc. The tube that is inserted is called an endoscope and it helps to visualise the surgical site and even operate it.

Through the endoscope or other keyhole incisions, the surgeon inserts microscopic instruments to extract an affected portion of the disc. A laser may be used to cut away a part of the disc.

For some patients, microdiscectomy may be followed by spinal fusion surgery to stabilize the spine in patients with spinal instability, who serve strenuous physical activity, or who are athletes. Fusion connects two vertebrae in a place where the disc has been removed, using a bone graft and screws or plates to fuse them into one piece of bone.

Postoperative Care

The patient gets hospital discharge the same day or the next day after surgery. Following surgery, the patients are recommended to increase their activity levels gradually. If necessary, physical therapy is started four to six weeks after surgery to improve the spinal strength and range of motion.

Risks of Microdiscectomy

  • Lower back pain
  • Nerve damage causing discomfort, numbness, and weakness in the legs
  • Bowel or bladder difficulties caused by a nerve injury
  • Kyphosis, or spondylolisthesis- is a progressive lumbar spine deformity.
  • Fusion is required at a later stage.
  • Ongoing symptoms
  • Disc herniation recurrence: During microdiscectomy surgery, only the prolapsed or loose portion of the disc is usually removed. There are a lot more discs left behind. Some surviving discs may herniate at some point, which is known as recurrent disc prolapse. Recurrent disc herniation has been recorded at rates ranging from 5 to 15%.
Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the possible outcomes if treatment is not undertaken?

If the herniated or degenerative lumbar disc is not treated appropriately (and sometimes even if it is), there may be some complications. The patients might experience persistent pain in their legs and back; leg paralysis, weakness, or numbness; legs or lower back dysfunction; Cauda equina syndrome' that causes bowel and bladder control problems and erectile dysfunction; and walking and balance difficulties.

2. What are the results of surgery?

Over 90% of patients will benefit significantly from surgery, and this effect is usually sustained in the long term.

Leg pain is generally the symptom of herniated lumbar disc that improves most reliably after surgery. Back discomfort may or may not improve (in rare cases, it may worsen). Besides, the surgery helps improve the weakness of the legs. However, the patient's back and leg strength may not return to normal. Strength usually improves over several weeks or months. That’s because the nerve fibres transmitting sensation become thinner and more sensitive to pressure. They get more readily permanently destroyed than the other nerve fibres. The surgery may or may not improve the numbness of pins and needles.

3. What are the factors on which microdiscectomy surgery cost depends?

The Cost of Microdiscectomy Surgery in Hyderabad depends on factors like location, hospital fees, surgeon's fees, anesthesia, imaging, and post-operative care. Health insurance coverage can also influence the overall cost.

Please consult Arete Hospitals for specific details on microdiscectomy surgery for Surgical Treatment of a Herniated Disc in Hyderabad, and also to learn more about its cost, procedure, and other relevant information.

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