A severely herniated disc in the lumbar vertebrae, or lower spine, can cause extreme pain in the lower back and can limit mobility. A lumbar microdiscectomy can relieve pressure on the spine and alleviate lower back pain.
The lumbar vertebrae are the bottom five bones in the spine. These vertebrae are separated by discs with a tough outer edge and a jelly-like interior. When these discs burst or deteriorate, they can cause pressure on the spine that can cause pain, numbness, and loss of mobility in the legs and feet. Patients with severe leg pain, weakness, numbness, or impaired bowel or bladder function.
The lumbar microdiscectomy relieves pressure on the nerve roots caused by the herniated disc. It is performed arthroscopically, so it is minimally invasive. A small camera shows the pinched nerve, and instruments are fed through the tiny incision to remove the portion of the disc putting pressure on the nerve. The surgeon can also remove any fragments that may have broken off from the disc or bone.
Recovery time can take up to 8 weeks, and physical therapy may be necessary to improve strength and return range of motion to the lower extremities.