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postheadericon Lazer Surgery for the Spine! What You Need to Know

Article by Dale Anthony

“Laser” is an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation, a unique type of light energy produced by man. Laser light is different than visible light in its characteristics of collimation (all emitted light is almost perfectly parallel), coherent (light waves are all in phase in both time and space) and monochromatic (one specific wave length).

The principle of lasing phenomena is the ability of photons to stimulate the emission of other photons, each having the same wave length and direction of travel. When a photon passes close to an excited electron, the electron will become stimulated to emit a photon that is identical in both wave length, phase and spatial coherence to the impinging photon.

The laser that’s often employed in Lazer Surgery for the Spine is a 2.1 Holmium YAG Laser which remains today the most effective laser in orthopaedic surgery and specifically in arthroscopic and endoscopic surgery.

Here are some of the conditions that Lazer Surgery for the Spine may help with:

Spinal fusion – the surgical joining of two more vertebrae together, usually with bone grafts and hardware. The resulting fused vertebrae are stable but immobile. Spinal fusion is used as a treatment for spondylolisthesis, scoliosis, herniated discs, and spinal stenosis.

Spinal stenosis – the narrowing of the spinal canal (through which the spinal cord runs), often by the overgrowth of bone caused by osteoarthritis of the spine.

Herniated Disc With age, the center of vertebral discs may start to lose water content, making the disc less effective as a cushion, causing displacement of the disc’s center (herniated or ruptured disc) through a crack in the outer layer. Most disc herniations occur in the bottom two discs of the lumbar spine, at and just below the waist. A herniated disc can press on a nerve root in the spine and may cause back pain or pain, numbness, tingling or weakness of the leg called “sciatica.” Also known as a slipped or ruptured disc, or herniated nucleus pulposus (HNP). Can also occur in the neck and rarely in the thoracic portion of the spine.

Spinal Stenosis The narrowing of the spinal canal (through which the spinal cord runs), often by the overgrowth of bone caused by osteoarthritis of the spine

Degenerative Disc Disease A catch-all term to describe degenerative changes in the disc(s) due to aging or wear and tear.

Failed Open Back Surgery Self Explanatory

Radiculopathy Impairment of a nerve root, usually causing radiating pain, numbness, tingling or muscle weakness that correspond to a specific nerve root.

Sciatica Pain, numbness, tingling in the distribution of the sciatic nerve, which travels from deep in the buttock down to the foot.

Spondylosis A fracture (crack) in the “pars interarticularis” where the vertebral body and the posterior elements, protecting the nerves are joined, In about 5 percent of the adult population, there is a developmental crack in one of the vertebrae, usually at the point at which the lower (lumbar) part of the spine (L5) joins the tailbone (sacrum).

Spondylolisthesis Degenerative When a vertebra slips forward over the vertebra below it as a result of arthritis of the small joints of the spine and degeneration of the discs.

Spondylolisthesis Isthmic When a vertebra with a crack in the “pars interarticularis” where the vertebral body and the posterior elements, protecting the nerves are joined, slips forward over the vertebra below it. Spondylolisthesis can be graded as I, II, III or IV based on how far forward the vertebra has slipped.

Lazer Surgery for the Spine has shown to be effective in treating pain from sciatica, spinal fusion, headache, pinched nerve, back pain, neck pain, degenerative disc disease, sciatica, spinal instability, lumbar arthritis, degenerative disc disease, spondylosis, spondylolisthesis, failed back surgery syndrome, chronic back pain, radiculopathy and many other conditions that can cause severe back pain.

About the Author

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