Percutaneous Discectomy

Percutaneous Discectomy

Herniated discs are one of the most common causes of chronic back pain. As intervertebral discs wear out due to age, overuse or injury, the outer layer may weaken, allowing the contents of the disc to leak out. This leaking material can pinch a nerve root, resulting in pain and other symptoms.

This can be treated with a procedure known as Percutaneous Discectomy. This is a minimally invasive procedure for the removal of herniated disk material that may be pressing on a nerve root or the spinal cord.

The Procedure

The procedure involves placing a needle in the center of the disc to create a series of channels through which tissue is removed from the nucleus. This decompresses the herniated disc and relieves pressure on the nerve. The procedure is done under mild sedation for comfort.

The procedure may take between 20 minutes to an hour. You should be able to go home in 2 or 3 hours.

After undergoing the percutaneous discectomy procedure, patients may be given prescription medication to relieve pain during the recovery period. You may also be asked to avoid prolonged sitting, as well as bending, twisting, and lifting, for several weeks.

Most patients respond well to Percutaneous Discectomy, and obtain leg and herniated disc pain relief within weeks.

Good Candidates for Percutaneous Discectomy

The procedure is highly beneficial for patients experiencing pain due to a contained herniated disc. A contained herniated disc is one that has no rupture in the outer wall of a bulging disc. This is NOT suitable for patients who have fragments of disc material in their spinal canal or those who suffer from narrowing of the spinal canal.