Spine & Back Pain Doctor

The Microsurgery Spine and Pain Institute in Plano, Texas offers Percutaneous Discectomy as a minimally invasive treatment for herniated discsCall us today for more information or to schedule an appointment.


What is Percutaneous Discectomy?

The spine of the human body is made up of 24 vertebrae, which stack on top of one another. The spinal cord and nerves run throughout the entire spine, sending messages to the brain and muscles. In between each vertebrae remains a jelly-filled disc with a tough outer core; the discs give flexibility to the spine and absorb shock when the body runs or jumps. Sometimes, when one injures his or her back or becomes older, the jelly-like substance pushes against the tough outer layer of the disc, sometimes breaking through and spilling onto the bones and nerves. Ruptured discs are called herniated discs. Though pain may not directly lie at the herniated disc, pain may occur in one’s legs. Back pain, weakness, numbness or tingling in the feet or loss of bladder or bowel control may result as well.

Patients who have a herniated disc often undergo percutaneous discectomy, a procedure that removes or reduces the amount of tissue in the nucleus of the herniated disc to relieve pain and inflammation. After taking a sedative, the patient lies in a prone position while the physician administers local anesthetic around the herniated disc. The physician inserts a needle into the herniated disc to remove the excess material, releasing the pressure and ridding the pain. Though patients will feel pressure during the removal of the excess material, the procedure is not supposed to be painful. While the removal of the tissue only takes a few minutes, the entire procedure lasts about 30 minutes. Patients can go home on the same day, yet the area of injection may be sensitive for 24 to 48 hours.


Treatment Benefits

The procedure is beneficial in that it is less invasive than surgery, which is more likely to leave scarring or fibrosis. Other benefits include the increased ability to move around and, of course, pain relief. Percutaneous discectomy remains minimal and safe with a significantly high success rate. Several risks accompany a percutaneous discectomy, including mild pain at the site of injection after the needle has been inserted. Also, some patients can suffer from compression of the spinal cord, infection, bleeding or hematoma. However, the benefits of a percutaneous discectomy outweigh the possible risks. Dr. Gabriel Rodriguez and the team at the Microsurgery Spine and Pain Institute are well-trained in the performance of percutaneous discectomies and are ready to serve the communities of Dallas, Plano, Frisco, McKinney, Allen and Carrollton.

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