Laminotomy for spinal stenosis is a procedure used to relieve pressure on the spinal canal. Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal, and often this narrowing is treated by removing bone and other tissue, including the partial or full removal of the lamina.
The lamina is a bony structure attached to each vertebra. Often called the “walls” of the spinal canal, the lamina is located on the interior side of the spine. Along with the vertebrae, the lamina helps to create a protective canal for the spinal cord to pass through.
A laminotomy is a type of decompression surgery that is often performed to open up space by removing a portion of the lamina. A laminectomy, on the other hand, involves removing all of the lamina.
Most patients suffering from symptoms of spinal stenosis experience relief from traditional treatments like exercise, over-the-counter medications and rest. In cases where patients experience debilitating symptoms that are non-responsive to conservative therapy, however, surgery is an option.
A laminotomy or laminectomy for spinal stenosis is usually performed in a hospital environment under general anesthesia. The surgeon makes a large incision, about 5 to 6 inches long, and retracts muscle and tissue back to access the spine and remove the portion of the lamina that is pressing upon the spinal cord. Recovery time is lengthy and can take up to a year depending on the age and general health of the individual. Scar tissue is likely to develop from the disruption of tissue.
There is an alternative to traditional open back laminotomy or laminectomy for spinal stenosis, however. Laser Spine Institute (LSI) offers laminotomy, foraminotomy, and other spinal stenosis surgery options that use minimally invasive techniques and come with substantially fewer side effects than open back surgery. LSI’s revolutionary procedures use an endoscope and small tools to perform decompression surgery through an incision less than a centimeter in length, so the amount of muscle and tissue damage is greatly reduced. And our endoscopic procedures are done in an outpatient setting using local anesthesia, so the chances of infection or other complications are lessened.
If you would like to learn more about how a minimally invasive laminotomy for spinal stenosis can help you reclaim your active, pain-free life, contact LSI today.? We can review your MRI or CT scan at no cost to you.