Spinal Surgery: Is it a good alternative for Back or Neck Pain?
Spinal pain (back and neck)is the most common ailment of modern lifestyle. It is caused by compression of nerves that can be because of herniated (bulged or ruptured) disc or overgrown bone in spine. In addition to this, other factors like aging, trauma of spine, wrong body postures or structural abnormalities can also injure the spine and cause pain. It is not easy to locate the deformity or exact cause of pain in most of the cases and requires exhaustive physical examination and diagnostic tests like X-ray, CT scan or MRI to conclude the possible cause of pain.
Although the pain generally resolves with time on its own without any treatment but medications like anti-inflammatory drugs, pain killers, cortisone injections, massage with heat and physical therapy can provide quick relief. But in some cases when all types of treatments fail to provide relief to the patient, surgery may help relieve some of the causes or cases of spinal pain. It’sbasically challenging for surgeons to precisely predictthe right candidate for surgery as spinal pain is a complex issue thatrequire a team of specialized healthcare professionals to diagnose and treatit effectively.
Spine surgery can be minimally invasive orextensive depending upon the severity of symptoms and deformity. Various types of spinal surgeries include:
• Diskectomy:It is the procedure in which herniated disc is removed to ease the inflammation and irritation of spinal nerve.
• Laminectomy:It involves removal of overlying bone on spinal canal to enlarge canal and relieve nerve pressure.
• Fusion:It is the procedure in which two or more bones are permanently fused in spine to eliminate pain associated with motion by adding stability to spine.
• Artificial discs:It is the alternative treatment to spinal fusion in which artificial disc is implanted to relieve pain.
All these surgical procedures are done with an aim to benefits the patient. The main benefits include:
• Decreased or no pain
• Relieves numbness of associated limb
• Improved activity
• Very less or no need of pain killers
• Better emotional status
• Enhanced work productivity
• Better physical activity
It takes almost One to Three Months Post-Operation for the patient to fully recover from the surgery and thus evaluate the benefits of surgery. During this period, it is advisable to avoid excess motion or stress and take as much rest as possible. Although spinal surgery is overwhelmingly successful and patient generally do not have any pre or post operation complications but still it is always better to consider other treatment options and also take a second opinion.