The goal of Microdiscectomy surgery is to relieve symptoms of weakness, pain, numbness and tingling through restoring nerve function. This is done with minimal disruption to the patient's native anatomy. However, this can only be performed if there is no instability or "slippage" between the two vertebral bodies, also known as sponylolithesis.
After a small incision is made under direct visualization, the tissue is gently separated creating a tunnel to the Lamina, the back of the spine. A laminotomy is performed, where a small part of the lamina bone is removed, to allow access to the injured disc. Under direct visualization the herniated disc material is removed and the area is inspected to ensure that the spinal column and the nerve roots are free and clear. If there are bone spurs or excessive arthritic calcification a Foraminotomy will also be performed to carefully free the nerve root. Upon thorough inspection, instruments are removed and the separated layers of tissue are allowed to gently fall back into place. After the surgery is completed, the small incision is closed with tiny internal stitches, which dissolve over the next few weeks.