Is to free an entrapped nerve root and create more space and a better healing environment.
A laminectomy is the removal of a small portion of the bone, the lamina over the nerve root and/or disc material from under the nerve root in order to create more space around the nerve root and cord and remove any offending tissue in these areas.
A laminectomy is done to relive pressure from a nerve root or spinal cord resulting in the following symptoms:
- Mild to severe back pain
- Numbness or weakness in the legs
- Difficulty walking
- Difficulty controlling bladder or bowel movements
- Disc herniation
- Spinal stenosis
- Degenerative disc disease and bone spurs
- Removal of a tumor
A laminectomy is surgery to remove the lamina — the back part of the vertebra that covers your spinal canal. Also referred to as a decompression surgery, laminectomy enlarges your spinal canal to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves.
This pressure can be caused by bony overgrowths within the spinal canal (spinal stenosis) or by a herniated disk. Laminectomy is most commonly performed on the vertebrae in the lower back and in the neck.
A laminectomy is only recommended when more-conservative treatments — such as medication and physical therapy — have failed to relieve symptoms or if the symptoms are severe or worsening.
Laminectomy is generally a safe procedure but the risk of potential complications include:
- Blood clots
- Nerve injury
- Spinal fluid leak
70% to 80% of patients who have laminectomies show significant improvement in their function (ability to perform normal daily activities) and a reduction in their pain and discomfort.
The recovery time will depend on the extent of your surgery and your general health resulting in:
Being able to return to light activity (desk work and light housekeeping) within a few days to a few weeks.
Your doctor may not advise a return to full activities involving lifting and bending for two to three months.
You should start light walking and physical therapy exercises as per your doctor’s instructions.