Myelopathy Surgery
Table of Contents

Myelopathy Surgery

Myelopathy is a neurological condition that subtly develops over time due to degenerative changes of the spine resulting in pinching of the spinal cord and nearby structures of the neck. In other words, myelopathy is a spinal cord dysfunction caused by prolonged aberrant pressure on the spinal cord, causing it to deteriorate. Any portion of the spinal cord can be affected, but the cervical spine is the most commonly affected. Pressure on the spinal cord, as opposed to pressure on individual nerve roots, can result in loss of nerve function anywhere along the spinal cord, below the compressed or injured location.

The most prevalent cause of myelopathy is spinal cord compression caused by spinal stenosis or spondylosis. This is a narrowing of the spinal canal caused by spine deterioration. This is frequently the result of disc degeneration and ligament thickness. Chronic spinal cord compression can also be caused by:

  • Disc bulging or intervertebral disc prolapse
  • Instability of the spine
  • Spinal vascular malformation, spinal tumour
  • Spine injury or fracture
  • Syringomyelia or the formation of a syrinx. 

If one is looking for Spinal Cord Compression Treatment in Hyderabad they can contact the spinal surgeons at Arete Hospitals. They can help one provide comfort with the complications caused by this condition and help one lead a healthy life.

Myelopathy symptoms can range from mild to severe, and they can worsen over time. Among the symptoms are:

  • Arm and hand sluggishness and clumsiness
  • Leg weakness and gait changes (pattern of walking)
  • Numbness, tingling, or loss of sensation in hands, arms, and legs
  • Intestinal or urinary tract dysfunction
  • Imbalance problems
  • Fine motor skill difficulties
  • Neck discomfort

When the above-mentioned symptoms of myelopathy persist or worsen despite being treated non-surgically, a spinal surgeon may recommend surgery.

Arete Hospitals is one of the leading multispecialty hospitals where myelopathy can be best treated by various surgical options, as per patient requirements. The world-class Spine Surgeons in Hyderabad are staffed under the roof of the spine department to provide comprehensive care to patients suffering from myelopathy. 

Benefits of Myelopathy Surgery

  • Reduce spinal cord compression to prevent additional spine damage.
  • Reduce discomfort and help patients return to their normal activities.
  • Help patients alleviate symptoms or minimise the severity of myelopathy.
  • Stimulate neuron regeneration and myelin sheath repair, and reduce the effects of decreased blood flow in the spinal cord, thereby enhancing functional results after surgical decompression.

What is Myelopathy Surgery?

Myelopathy Surgery in Hyderabad refers to a set of operations that can be performed by a spinal surgeon to relieve symptoms of myelopathy by relieving pressure on the spinal cord. It involves the removal of bone pieces or soft tissue such as thickened ligament or herniated disc that may be taking up space in the spinal canal and providing insufficient room for the spinal cord. Myelopathy surgery helps create enough space for the spinal cord to no longer get pinched.  

Before Myelopathy Surgery

To prepare well for myelopathy surgery, patients must follow the pre-operative instructions given by the spine surgeon. This includes: 

  • Stop smoking and excess alcohol consumption to avoid delayed healing after surgery.
  • Do exercise regularly to stay physically fit and reduce the recovery period.
  • Cease intake of non-essential drugs or herbal remedies that could cause blood thinning or interact with anaesthesia and other drugs that you are already taking for a few weeks before the surgery.
  • Do not consume anything for 6-8 hours before the scheduled time of the surgery.
  • Arrange for someone to drive home and take care for at least 1-2 days following surgery.

What does Myelopathy Surgery Involve?

Myelopathy-relieving surgeries relieve pressure on the spinal cord and make additional space for the spinal cord within the spinal canal. They can be approached anteriorly (front) or posteriorly (back).

The procedures that are typically performed to treat myelopathy include:

  • Discectomy: This surgery involves the removal of the damaged disc of the spine between the two vertebral bones to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or the spinal nerve roots.
  • Corpectomy: This surgery involves the removal of damaged vertebrae and intervertebral discs that are pinching the spinal cord and spinal nerves.
  • Spinal fusion: It helps correct abnormalities with the small bones of the spine. This involves joining two or more vertebrae together so that they can recover into a single solid bone. It is done by using bone grafts, screws, and rods. This can help reduce painful movements and restore spine stability. It is usually performed following a discectomy, corpectomy, or laminectomy procedure.
  • Laminectomy: A laminectomy involves the removal of the bony arch of the spinal canal, known as the lamina, as well as any bone spurs or ligaments that are compressing the spinal cord. The laminectomy reduces spinal cord pressure by allowing the spinal cord to shift back.
  • Laminoplasty: A laminoplasty is a laminectomy alternative in which the lamina is thinned out on one side and then cut on the other. This produces a hinge that expands the room for the spinal cord and allows the surgeon to repair any compressed spine levels. This treatment can help maintain up to 50% of the motion in the affected parts of the spine.

To get the Best Comprehensive Myelopathy Spinal Cord Surgery in Hyderabad get in touch with spine surgeons at Arete Hospitals.

Good Candidates For Myelopathy Surgery

The suitable candidates for Myelopathy Treatment in Hyderabad include patients who have progressive neurological changes with symptoms of severe compression of the spinal cord or excessive swelling of the spinal cord. Patients experiencing disabling pain may also get help from surgery.

Better surgical outcomes from spine surgery are usually experienced by patients having the following characteristics:

  • Younger age
  • Enough space available for the spinal cord
  • Shorter duration of symptoms of the condition
  • A single site of involvement of the spinal cord.

Spinal Decompression Surgery in Hyderabad is a typical treatment for myelopathy that relieves pressure on the spinal cord. If bone spurs or herniated discs are found to be the cause of myelopathy, surgery can be used to remove them.

The Spine Doctors in Hyderabad may suggest surgical treatment to expand the channel space of the spinal cord (laminoplasty) if an individual has advanced myelopathy caused by stenosis. This is a motion-sparing approach, which means the spinal cord retains flexibility at the region of compression. Decompression and spinal fusion are other options that can be performed anteriorly (from the front) or posteriorly (from the back). During spinal fusion, vertebrae are united to prevent motion in the affected segment.

After Discharge Instructions

  • Avoid taking any anti-inflammatory medications for 6 weeks
  • Avoid heavy weight lifting
  • Avoid driving until the doctor gives clearance for it
  • Go for follow-up visits
  • Do physical therapy and avoid any activities that could put pressure on the operated spine
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Having too much weight strains the spine
  • Quit smoking. Spinal disks degrade more quickly in smokers.

Risks and Complications

The potential general risks and complications for any spine surgical procedure include:

  • Injury of the spinal cord or nerves
  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Anaesthesia-related reactions
  • The need for additional surgery in the future
  • Failure to provide relief from myelopathy symptoms
  • Dural tear- tearing of the sac covering the spinal nerves
  • Life-threatening medical conditions such as stroke, heart attack, or lung health issues.

The complications of myelopathy surgery can be related to the surgical approach used, the type of bone graft used for spinal fusion, healing, or long-term changes in the spine. Generally, elderly or/ overweight myelopathy patients, smokers, diabetics, and patients with multiple medical issues including myelopathy are at higher risk of experiencing surgical complications.

An anterior cervical spine surgery can have risks including:

  • Change in voice
  • Trouble in swallowing or soreness
  • Harm to oesophagus
  • Breathing issues
  • Degeneration of the intervertebral discs above or below the surgery level.

The potential risks of posterior cervical spine surgery include:

  • Damage to the vertebral artery
  • Stretching on the nerves from the backward drifting of the spinal cord
  • Wound breakdown.
Frequently Asked Questions

1. How can I prevent myelopathy?

Myelopathy cannot always be prevented. Some myelopathy is caused by common wear and tear caused by ageing. However, strengthening and caring for the back can help prevent some causes of myelopathy. Some back problems can be avoided or mitigated with proper back care.

2. What is the prognosis for patients suffering from myelopathy?

Myelopathy might worsen over time if left untreated. The nerves that govern important body motions and functions might be irreversibly damaged by spinal compression. As nerve damage cannot be reversed, it is critical to get treatment as soon as possible after patients notice symptoms. Early detection and treatment can help improve the condition and, in some situations, reverse a spinal cord injury.

3. How do doctors diagnose cervical myelopathy?

The doctor may ask the patient about the symptoms and examine the patient's neck for atypical reflexes, numbness, and muscular atrophy. To confirm the diagnosis, some diagnostic techniques such as X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging, and myelograms may be performed. A myelogram is a type of computed tomography (CT) scan in which a dye is injected before the scan to provide a more detailed outline of the spinal cord. For more details on diagnosis and Treatment for Cervical Myelopathy in Hyderabad get in touch with Arete Hospital's doctors.

Get in touch with Myelopathy Doctors in Hyderabad at Arete Hospitals as they offer expert care and state-of-the-art facilities. Contact us today for personalised medical assistance.

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