Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Discectomy in Manalapan, NJ
Disc herniation can be a painful condition that reduces your quality of life significantly. While conservative ways to deal with a herniated disc exist, they don’t always bring the desired results. If medication and therapy don’t work, your doctor may recommend surgery.
If you are a good candidate for a minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy in Manalapan, NJ, you need to find an experienced surgeon. At NJ Spine & Orthopedic, we have a team of board-certified spine surgeons who perform minimally invasive procedures regularly. Our Concierge Team and skilled surgeons can help answer any questions you may have.
What Is Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Discectomy?
Your spinal canal is made up of stacked bones, called vertebrae. The majority of vertebrae move to provide a range of motion. Between these vertebrae, there are cushions that are called intervertebral discs. They expand in response to weight and snap back into shape after the weight lifts.
Intervertebral discs can degenerate due to trauma, aging, or genetic factors. When this happens, the disc can tear and bulge out, putting pressure on the nerves around it and causing pain in the back or neck. To remove deteriorated portions of the disc, a surgeon can perform a minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy.
Depending on the extent of your condition, the surgeon may choose to remove all free disc fragments and additional materials from the internal part of the disc. This is called an aggressive discectomy. Alternatively, they can perform a limited discectomy that involves trimming the materials outside the disc without touching the inside. Both procedures can be performed endoscopically.
How Is a Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Discectomy Performed?
Minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy is often an outpatient procedure. If the surgeon chooses to administer local anesthesia, you can usually go home several hours after the surgery. With general anesthesia, you may need to stay overnight.
After the anesthesia starts working, the surgeon uses a scalpel to make a small incision over the affected area of your spine. To achieve precision, the team uses a fluoroscope. Next, the surgeon places retractors to separate muscles and tissues to gain access to your spine. Then, they insert an endoscope through the incision.
An endoscope is a thin tube with a camera on the end of it. This camera transmits the picture to a big-screen monitor in the operating room. The surgeon uses this picture to get full visualization of the herniated disc and the surrounding structures. By using surgical instruments that go inside through the tube, the surgeon removes the herniated disc material that’s pressing on the nerves. This relieves the pressure and alleviates the related symptoms.
The surgeon then pulls out the deteriorated disc material through the tube, removes the endoscope, and closes the incision with sutures or adhesive strips. The operation doesn’t take a long time. Usually, you can be out of the operating room in under an hour.
Recovery After a Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Discectomy
Since endoscopic discectomy is a minimally invasive procedure, it has a shorter recovery time than an open spine surgery. Before you go home after the operation, your surgeon will discuss the recovery period. Since walking increases the blood flow and reduces the possibility of blood clot formation, the surgical team is likely to encourage you to get out of bed and walk around right after the anesthesia wears off.
For at least three weeks after the surgery, you will need to avoid impact activities, like lifting heavy objects, and repetitive tasks that require a full range of motion in your spine. Bending, twisting, and lifting should be highly limited. In some cases, your Manalapan minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy surgeon may recommend wearing a back brace to provide extra comfort.
Since the incision is small, the pain after minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy doesn’t last as long as after an open surgery. However, your surgeon may still prescribe pain medication to ease any pain that may occur.
Who Is a Candidate for Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Discectomy?
You can be a good candidate for a minimally invasive endoscopic discectomy if you have one of the following conditions:
- Thoracic, cervical, or lumber disc herniation, bulge, or prolapse
- Radiculopathy, which is injury or damage to the nerves in the area where they leave the spine
- Lumbar or cervical disc tear
When your doctor diagnoses one of the above conditions, they usually set up a conservative course of treatment that may include medication, injections, physical therapy, and lifestyle changes. If this approach doesn’t work for three months or longer, they may then suggest surgery.
Before making the decision about your candidacy, a surgeon reviews your imaging tests and medical history. They may not recommend the procedure if you have calcified discs, cauda equina syndrome, severe fibrotic adhesion, or serious spinal infection.
Schedule a Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Discectomy in Manalapan, NJ Today
If you are suffering from chronic pain caused by a herniated disc, you may need an endoscopic discectomy. This minimally invasive procedure has multiple benefits including effective pain relief, fast recovery, low risk of infection, and excellent long-term outcomes.
Board-certified spine surgeons from NJ Spine & Orthopedic perform minimally invasive endoscopic discectomies in Manalapan, NJ. If you think you can benefit from this procedure, please reach out to us online or call us at (866) 553-0612 with one of our specialists.