When does one need Spinal Surgery? - Dr. Lakshmi Kanth J. Spinal surgery is indicated for one of these three conditions. One, if the spinal cord or the nerve root is compressed the surgery can relieve the pressure on the nerve root or the spinal cord, second, if the spine is unstable or if there is abnormal movement in the spine , which could cause damage to the spinal cord or nerve root then surgery is indicated to stabilise the spine so that there is no abnormal mobility. The third reason for spinal surgery is to correct the alignment, if the spine is deformed, the spine alignment can be restored by surgery. Vast amount of disc prolapse, please rest for couple of days, analgesics and physiotherapy. Indication for surgery is very specific. There are absolute indications where surgery is done , that is if there is severe pain, going to the leg along with neurological deficits, that is weakness of the toes or the foot with numbness or there is difficulty passing urine or to go to the toilet, to move bowels. This is known as cauda equina syndrome. In such situations surgery has to be done in an urgent emergency way. The second reason is failure of treatment. If the patient does not improve with simple treatment after 3 to 4 week s or 6 weeks pf treatment, then surgery would be indicated, the common surgery to cure lumbar disc herniation is microdiscectomy where a small incision is done on the back the muscles are pushed to one side and the spinal cord and the nerve root is visualised , then next the disc which has come out or is protruding is removed through a tiny hole this procedure does not cause damage to the spinal cords or nerves or any skeletal structure. After a lumbar discectomy or a lumbar disc surgery, patient is allowed to walk the next day and he will probably go home in 2 days.
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