When lower back pain caused by a lumbar slipped disc isn’t relieved with non-surgical treatments, such as physical therapy or steroid injections, it’s time to consult Dr. Branko Skovrlj, the best spinal surgeon in the Northeast. Dr. Skovrlj is the founder of NU-Spine: The Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Institute. He’s one of only a few neurosurgeons who focus on the treatment of complex spinal procedures, using state-of-the-art technology and advanced surgical techniques. Don’t take a chance with your back. Ignoring lower back pain may end up causing further complications. Call today for an expert consultation and effective treatment options for a lumbar slipped disc.
When Do I Need Lumbar Slipped Disc Surgery?
When you experience persistent low back pain that hasn’t responded to other forms of treatment, you may have a slipped lumbar disc. Dr. Branko Skovrlj at NU-Spine: The Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Institute offers the most up-to-date lumbar slipped disc treatment. Surgery procedures relieve your discomfort and get you back to living an active lifestyle.
Pain in your lower back, also called the lumbar spine, is the most often cited reason for a doctor visit and missed workdays. Your lumbar spine provides mobility for actions such as twisting and bending. It also supports the weight of your upper body.
Spinal discs, set in between each vertebra, act as cushions in your spine. A lumbar slipped disc is a condition in which the jelly-like center of an intervertebral disc breaks through the tough outer shell to irritate a nearby root nerve. Once a disc is damaged, it loses its cushioning affect, which is another reason why it’s so painful every time you move.
What Symptoms Signal a Need for Surgery?
The driving goal behind surgical back pain treatment is to relieve the intense pain that affects your quality of life. A lumbar slipped disc shares many of the same symptoms as other immobilizing lower back disorders, such as:
- A disc herniation
- A ruptured disc
- A slipped disc in your neck
- A prolapsed disc
- Lumbar degenerative disc disease
- Lumbar degenerative joint disease
- Lumbar radiculopathy
- Lower back sprain
- Sacroiliac joint disease
- Lumbar myelopathy
Following a thorough exam to pinpoint the exact cause of your pain, your New Jersey spine surgeon recommends surgical lumbar slipped disc treatment when your symptoms continue. The symptoms that point to a need for surgery include:
- Worsening neurological symptoms, such as leg numbness or weakness
- Severe back pain that interferes with your sleep
- Persistent, continual lower back pain
- An inability to stand or walk without assistance
- Loss of balance or fine motor skills
- Loss of bowel or bladder control
- Conservative lumbar slipped disc treatments — such as medications, physical therapy or rest — have been unsuccessful
What Are Some Surgical Lumbar Slipped Disc Treatments?
Surgery as a slipped lumbar disc treatment is done to ease pressure on a nerve that’s being squashed or impinged. The goal is to relieve the pain and eliminate the other symptoms. Lumbar slipped disc surgery is usually minimally invasive. Treatments recommended by your NU-Spine doctor may include:
- Discectomy This surgery removes a damaged disc that’s pressing on a nerve. The disc may need to be replaced or the surrounding bones fused together.
- Microdiscectomy This is a type of decompression surgery that’s done to remove part of a damaged disc that’s pressing on a nerve.
- Laminectomy This procedure involves removal of the lamina, the part of the vertebrae that covers the spinal column, to give a nerve root more space.
- Minimally invasive laminectomy This procedure uses special instruments that allow the surgeon to access the lamina by separating tissues rather than cutting, as is done in an open surgical procedure.
- Spinal fusion This procedure may be done after a laminectomy to join two bones together with screws to stabilize the spine.
Your spine surgeon determines the type of lumbar slipped disc surgery that’s best for you. The decision typically depends on the severity of your condition and the level of disability you’re experiencing, along with the location of the affected disc. Dr. Skovrlj, who has dedicated his career to spine surgery, has the experience and skills to get you out of pain.
What Should I Expect After Surgical Lumbar Slip Disc Treatment?
Many types of lumbar slipped disc surgery are done on an outpatient basis. If you do need to go into a hospital for the surgery, you should be able to go home within 24 hours. After lumbar slipped disc surgery, most people find their pain is relieved fairly quickly.
It sometimes takes a few weeks before you see drastic improvements in your mobility. You need to avoid some activities for several weeks while you’re recovering, such as:
- Lifting heavy objects or weights
- Bending over
- Sitting for long periods of time
- Most sports activities
- Exercises not recommended by your doctor
As part of your treatment plan, your doctor may recommend special exercises or physical therapy after surgery. Following a program of rehabilitation after surgery helps improve mobility and leads to a shortened recovery time.
When Is Surgery the Best Option to Treat a Slipped Disc?
Lumbar slipped disc surgery may be your best option when you’ve had symptoms for six weeks or longer. Also, you’re a good candidate for surgery when your symptoms make it difficult for you to participate in normal daily activities. You don’t have to live with the pain of a lumbar slipped disc. In fact, ignoring it may lead to further complications, such as:
- Lumbar Radiculopathy, which is pinching of a nerve root in the spinal column
- The risk of having permanent or long-term damage
- Other complications, such as depression or weight gain that only exacerbate the condition
For expert care by an experienced, top-rated spine doctor, contact NU-Spine in Edison, NJ. Dr. Skovrlj offers evidence-based spinal treatments focusing on long-term successful outcomes.Page Updated on Jul 9, 2021 by Dr. Branko Skovrlj (Neurosurgeon / Spine surgeon) of NU-Spine: The Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Institute in New Jersey