Lumbar – Laminectomy

A lumbar laminectomy with instrumented fusion indicates a traditional lumbar laminectomy performed with the assistance of screws, cages, hooks, plates, and rods to support the spine around the surgical site. These instruments are put in place to aid the spinal column in healing following the procedure, ensuring they fuse together correctly.

Why Would My Doctor Order An Instrument Laminectomy?

Instrumented laminectomies are necessary in those cases where the spine has become compromised due to degeneration, trauma, deformity, or surgery. With this instrumentation in place, it is the goal of the surgeon to return strength and durability to the spine so the patient can go about their day to day activities without further injury while protecting the nerves housed within.

How Are Instrumented Laminectomies Performed?

The purpose of the procedure is to encourage and support spinal fusion through the use of a bridge of bone connecting healthy bone to the weakened portions of the spine. During the surgery, the placement of a bone graft occurs across the area that the physician hopes to fuse. The origin of this graft material may be the patient themselves, typically from the iliac crest of the hip, or from cadavers. If taken from the patient’s body the graft is referred to as an autograft, while bone received from donors is known as an allograft.

How Will an Instrumented Lumbar Laminectomy Help Heal The Body?

The body contains specific proteins known as bone morphogenic proteins, or BMPs, that promote the natural healing and fusing of bone within the body following an injury. These same proteins can be used to encourage the regeneration and stabilization of bone in the spine. Additionally, some patients will receive bone substitutes or other biologics that will help this procedure. The Lumbar laminectomy and fusion aids this process by providing a clean and open space for the bone to fuse across. The rods, cages, and other instrumentation are there to protect and secure the area, so the bone has the opportunity to heal.

What Is A Bridge?

A bridge refers to the instruments used to span the laminectomy site, and while it secures and strengthens the spine during recovery, it is not a long-term solution in and of itself. Every day the bridge will become less durable as the patients day to day activities strain them, and it is possible for this instrumentation to fail. Proper fusion of the bones is so vital as it allows the patient’s body to support itself naturally when the bridge is no longer capable of performing its function. Typically, the bridge is left in place even if the recovery is successful.

Speak to Dr. Yevgeniy Khavkin, your pain management doctor in Las Vegas, NV for further information about this procedure and to determine if it may be appropriate for your case. Laminectomies are very invasive procedures, and while it is considered safe, less invasive treatments get used before taking this step. These treatments can include exercise, physical therapy, and over-the-counter medications.

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