Nucleoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure designed to treat symptoms caused by contained disc herniations. Nucleoplasty has been shown to successfully decompress the spinal disc and reduce VAS pain scores. This is suitable for herniated disc that is moderate in size, and you have failed conservative non surgical back treatment. Nucleoplasty is not suitable for patients with degenerative disc diseases or spinal fractures. If your spine surgeon decides that Nucleoplasty can be an option for you, this is what you can expect about Nucleoplasty.
Your doctor will conduct a medical evaluation which will include a physical exam. Diagnositic tests such as MRI or discography may be conducted to diagnose and locate the symptomatic disc herniation and determine if the procedure is appropriate.
Nucleoplasty requires that you lie on your stomach through the entire surgery, which is performed under local anesthesia and light sedation. The elimination of general anesthesia and open surgery will reduce complications in the procedure. A small cut is then made in the skin near the spine and a needle is inserted. The decompression device is then inserted through the needle, into the disc and activated to remove tissue. The device and needle are removed and the small cut is covered with a bandage. Nucleoplasty will take approximately one hour.
After nucleoplasty, patients will be required to remain for observation for one to two hours. Patients are then discharged on the same day to rest for one to three days with limited sitting or walking. In most cases, symptoms caused by the disc herniation are gone or diminished within two weeks. A patient may experience some discomfort or bruising where the needle was inserted. After about one week, patients are allowed to return to their everyday life with some physical activity.
For a comprehensive consultation to decide if the Nucleoplasty treatment is best suited for your health, contact our spine specialist Dr Hee Hwan Tak today at Pinnacle Orthopedic. Visit Dr Hee Hwan Tak’s Google+ page here.