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Doctor insights on: Recovery Time Laser Spine Surgery

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Dr. Edward Hellman
242 Doctors shared insights

Spine Surgery (Definition)

This is surgery to treat disorders of the spine. It may be a discectomy, laminectomy, or fusion. Fusion surgery usually means using special plates and screws whic typically stay in permanently. Many of these procedures can be performed ...Read more


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How safe is laser spine surgery?

How safe is laser spine surgery?

Why: Laser spine surgery carries with it the same dangers as conventional spine surgery. The real question is are there advantages of laser spine surgery over conventional spine surgery. According to a paper by the mayo clinic laser spine surgery does not provide any advantage over conventional spine surgery. There are no independent studies that have confirmed the benefits of the laser spine surgery over conventional spine surgery. Additionally there in the next the tremendous expense of laser spine surgery that cost approximately 2 to 3 times that of conventional. ...Read more

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Are lasers used in spine surgery?

Are lasers used in spine surgery?

Yes. There are: Several indications for there use such as in certain disc surgeries or with treating certain tumors as well as in other limited indications. ...Read more

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Is laser spine surgery effective and safe?

Is laser spine surgery effective and safe?

Safe not effective: Laser spine surgery simply means removing disc with a laser rather than manually. It is typically performed percutaneously. Although there are reported benefits, in order to state that it is effective, those benefits have to beat the placebo effect which is considerable. Most of the laser surgeries done are for disc bulge which doesn't need surgery in the first place. ...Read more

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What is the safety and efficacy of laser spine surgery?

What is the safety and efficacy of laser spine surgery?

Nothing new about it: The use of lasers for spine surgery have been around for years. These devices are used mainly to burn and destroy tissue or nerves in attempts to manage pain. There are places throughout the country that advertise this new state of the art technology. Not much new about it. Not any riskier than traditional spine surgery. Not sure it is more effective. ...Read more

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What medications should be avoided before laser spine surgery?

What medications should be avoided before laser spine surgery?

Multiple: This is an important question to discuss with your doctor prior to surgery. For most cases, the following medications should be avoided:
1. Blood thinners (to decrease risk of bleeding)
2. Aspirin/plavix/anti-platelet meds (to decrease risk of bleeding)
3. Avoid recent spinal steroid injections (to decrease risk of infection). ...Read more

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What arrangements do I need to make before laser spine surgery?

Several: Make sure you understand your diagnosis and procedure. A lot of "laser" procedures are heavily marketed but don't have much evidence to show any benefit of the laser. Consider a second opinion prior to the procedure by another spine specialist. Ensure that you have tried non-operative treatment without success.

The arrangements otherwise are similar to those prior to any other surgery. ...Read more

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What are the negative and positive aspects of laser spine surgery?

Uncertain: Most spine surgeries have risks and benefits, most often based upon peer reviewed literature. Most facilities that offer these "laser" procedures should discuss such risks. As a reconstructive spinal surgeon, I have seen patients treated in these facilities who report acceptable pain relief. I have also performed major revision surgery for bad outcomes from laser surgery. ...Read more

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What are the advantages and disadvantages of the endoscopic laser spine surgery?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of the endoscopic laser spine surgery?

Less invasive: Pro: less invasive (small incision, less tissue disturbance), maybe faster recovery (hard to prove)
con: more x-ray exposure, fewer surgeons competent in technique, may or may not prove more effective than conventional surgery
both it and conventional share surgical risks: infection, bleeding, continued symptoms, relapse, nerve or blood vessel problems, etc. ...Read more

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What are my limitations after laser spine surgery? How long will I be in hospital?

Doctor: Talk with your surgeon. They can tell you the limitations and expectations, if you undergo a procedure. They should also inform you on where the procedure is done, since many of the "laser" procedures are done in various type of treatment facilities. If done in an outpatient setting, verify that the surgeon has admitting privileges at a nearby hospital in case overnight care is required. ...Read more

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I had back pain and it ruins my life. I was thinking to have a laser spine surgery. Thoughts?

I had back pain and it ruins my life. I was thinking to have a laser spine surgery. Thoughts?

Decompression: Most of the techniques of laser spine surgery involve decompressing the neural elements. This tends to be best at relieving radicular pain-pain which radiates down arms or legs. Surgical back pain is related to instability which is only relieved with a stabilizing procedure such as a fusion, disc replacement, or (experimental) joint replacement. Laser is unlikely to help pure back pain. ...Read more

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As medicine advances, do you think there will ever be a cure for scoliosis in the near future instead of surgery? I've heard of laser spine surgery?

As medicine advances, do you think there will ever be a cure for scoliosis in the near future instead of surgery? I've heard of laser spine surgery?

Potentially: As out knowledge advances on the causes of scoliosis we may find new ways to treat the condition early before surgery is required. However, if you already have the condition and it is worsening to the point surgery is needed, it is quite effective. That said, laser spine surgery has no role in the correction of scoliosis. ...Read more

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I have been three times in the spine surgery spinal stenosis incl. Why do I fall down a lot? Claudia

I have been three times in the spine surgery spinal stenosis incl. Why do I fall down a lot? Claudia

Many possibilities: I assume your previous surgeries were lumbar. If you have weakness in your legs, this can lead to falls. In addition, it is pretty common for people with lumbar spinal stenosis to also have cervical spinal stenosis. This can cause myelopathy-pressure on the spinal cord. Myelopathy can cause unsteadiness of walking and frequent falls. ...Read more

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Ileus, black projectile vomiting, bloated, unable to breathe after last gen. Anesthetic in 50yr old male for spine surgery. Why & how to avoid next time.

Ileus, black projectile vomiting, bloated, unable to breathe after last gen. Anesthetic in 50yr old male for spine surgery. Why & how to avoid next time.

Was this an: Anterior approach spine surgery? It is not uncommon to have an ileus after one. Avoiding nitrous and minimizing narcotics on your next procedure may help. Also, slowly advancing your diet post op may help you avoid worsening your symptoms. ...Read more

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My dad had a back (spine)surgery two weeks ago. He started vomiting, he has constipation and his stomach is bloated all the time. What shoild he take?

My dad had a back (spine)surgery two weeks ago. He started vomiting, he has constipation and his stomach is bloated all the time. What shoild he take?

Go see a doctor: Post surgical complications can occur. Your dad could have an ileus. Maybe he has a infection in his abdomen. Does he have a fever? I would call your surgeon and let him know about this. ...Read more

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Could disc pain be solved without lumber spine surgery?

Could disc pain be solved without lumber spine surgery?

Yes: Strengthening the muscles around the spine to support it is the first step. Time also often allows the pain to decrease. Sometimes an epidural injection may be indicated as well to help nerve associated pain. Also the majority of disc herniations get better over time. A physiatrist is the best person to guide the non-surgical treatments. ...Read more

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Dr. Stan Lee Dr. Lee
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Are there ever good outcomes for people having spine surgery?

Dr. Stan Lee Dr. Lee
2 doctors agreed:
Are there ever good outcomes for people having spine surgery?

Yes: Along with total knee and total hip replacement, routine spine surgeries are amongst the most successful surgeries in orthopaedics when done in the right circumstances. Be sure to select a surgeon who can thoroughly communicate all of the details, risks and benefits of surgery prior, so that an educated, informed decision can be made in whether or not to proceed. ...Read more

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Do insurance companies discriminate you if you have a spine surgery?

Do insurance companies discriminate you if you have a spine surgery?

Depends: It varies somewhat and is also controversial. Some companies will have a preexisting clause to avoid coverage of preexisting back problems for a period of time. I have even seen patients who could get insurance only if they would agree to a "cut out" that any future spine problems would not be covered secondary to their previous surgery. Thank you for the question. ...Read more

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What is minimally invasive spine surgery and how is it different from traditional spine surgery?

What is minimally invasive spine surgery and how is it different from traditional spine surgery?

Less Invasive: Minimally invasive spine surgery techniques treat spine disorders with minimal disruption of normal structures, particularly the back (para spinous) muscles. This is accomplished with smaller incisions, x-ray guidance, and gentle dilation of muscles instead of destructive techniques and large retractors. The overall results are the same as open spine surgeries but with much faster recovery. ...Read more

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Should I go skydiving after spine surgery?

Should I go skydiving after spine surgery?

Maybe: It depends a lot on what surgery you have and how badly you want to jump. The problem is in landing can cause a lot of impact on the spine. If you have a healed spine after surgery and it is very stable, it should be ok. However, the more often you put impacts on the spine, the more it will be prone to further problems down the road. ...Read more

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Dr. Harinder Gill
9 Doctors shared insights

Laser (Definition)

Laser is an abbreviation for light amplification ...Read more


Dr. Edward Hellman
334 Doctors shared insights

Orthopedic Spine Surgery (Definition)

An orthopedic surgeon who further specializes in the ...Read more