Spine Surgery in Orlando, FL
Patients suffering intense neck or back pain that has not improved with physical therapy, medication or other conservative treatments may benefit from spinal surgery. Successful spinal surgery can alleviate chronic neck or back pain as well as associated limb pain and weakness. Relief of these chronic issues may improve mobility and reduce or eliminate the need for medications. With relief from pain, mood, fitness and productivity can improve. Additionally, many patients who have been unable to work due to pain and/or weakness are able to return to work. With improved physical capabilities, patients have more control over their lives, can fulfill responsibilities and experience a greater sense of well-being.
The need for spine surgery is often due to degeneration or injury of the bony elements or disc material of the spine. A personal evaluation of your symptoms, spine and limbs, and imaging studies by Dr. Max Medary of Greater Orlando Neurosurgery & Spine can determine if you would benefit from spinal surgery.
Common Spinal Procedures
There are several procedures commonly performed to relieve the conditions causing pain of the neck or back pain and associated limb pain and/or weakness. The cervical (neck) and lumber (lower back) are the segments of the spine usually affected. Spinal narrowing or “stenosis” occurs in these areas due to deterioration with age, arthritic disease or repetitive physical stress. The narrowing is usually caused by herniated disc material or excess bone deposition in the spinal canal.
Lumbar disc herniations are usually amenable to minimally invasive microdiscectomy or foraminotomy to relieve compression of the spinal cord or nerve roots. Lumbar stenosis, where a longer section of spinal cord is compressed, is relieved by removing some of the bone surrounding the spinal cord with a laminectomy. In the cervical area, the narrowing is removed, and adjacent vertebrae fused to prevent recurrence. All these procedures are performed in the surgical suite but usually do not require admission to the hospital. Other more complicated causes of pain and/or weakness may be due to abnormal vertebral positions or motion such as spondylolisthesis and require individualized treatment plans of decompression and fixation.
If you are suffering from neck or back pain and associated limb pain or weakness, surgery of the spine can potentially alleviate your discomfort.
Spinal stenosis is a condition caused by the narrowing of the spaces in the spinal canal due to aging, wear and tear, arthritis, a spinal injury, or congenital defect. The compression of the spinal cord can impair nerve function in extremities and other parts of the body. It is most common in people over 50 years old. Chronic pain and loss of flexibility can dramatically affect the quality of your life.
If spinal stenosis affects the neck, it can cause:
- Tingling, weakness, or numbness in the legs, feet, arms, or hands
- Difficulty with balance and walking
If spinal stenosis affects the lower back, it can cause:
- Cramping and pain in your legs
- Difficulty standing for an extended period
- Difficulty walking
You can try a few simple tips at home to relieve the symptoms of spinal stenosis. You can:
- Take over-the-counter pain and anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen and naproxen
- Apply ice or heat to your spine in the affected area
- Maintain a healthy weight to prevent stress on your spine
Your medical provider may prescribe medications, physical therapy, and/or steroid injections to help control your pain. Increasing pain weakness or other neurological deficits may be an indication of a need for surgery.
Surgical decompression of the spinal canal is achieved with laminectomy which entails the removal of bone compressing the spinal cord. During your consultation, a personalized evaluation of your symptoms, physical findings and spine imaging can determine if your pain and other symptoms may benefit from surgical decompression.
Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF) is a surgical procedure that relieves neck pain accompanied by arm pain, numbness and/or weakness caused by compression of the spinal cord (myelopathy) or nerve roots (radiculopathy). The legs can also be affected and would benefit similarly.
The cervical spine may degenerate with age, arthritic disease or repetitive physical stress resulting in herniated discs or excess bone deposit in the spinal canal. Compression of the spinal cord and/or nerve roots causes neck pain with limb pain and possibly weakness.
Your healthcare provider may recommend physical therapy, NSAIDs, steroid injections or may prescribe corticosteroids and/or pain medications. Severe conditions may benefit from surgical decompression of the nerve roots and/or spinal canal by removing herniated disc material and offending bony protrusions. The adjacent vertebrae are fused to prevent painful abnormal motion segments. Relief from pain and weakness can often lead to improved mood, fitness and sense of well-being.