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Back pain or sciatica related to herniated or bulging discs or arthritis can take you away from your normal activities. You might not be able to comfortably stand, sit, walk, or more when you’re experiencing this type of pain. Minimally invasive lumbar decompression is an innovative surgery that offers relief from discomfort and allows you to get back to your life pain-free.

Lumbar spine or sciatica symptoms may include one or more of the following:

  • Back pain
  • Buttock pain
  • Thigh or lower leg pain
  • Thigh or leg weakness
  • Leg, thigh or foot tingling or numbness

It is recommended to visit a spine specialist like Dr. Charla Fischer at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City if you experience these types of symptoms. Conservative treatments are often performed initially, such as physical therapy, steroid injections, or chiropractic treatment.

If conservative therapies aren’t successful, Dr. Charla Fischer may recommend minimally invasive lumbar decompression. Because the spinal nerves traveling from your spinal canal down through your buttocks, legs or thighs can become compressed or pinched, the pressure may be released through minimally invasive surgery. Eliminating pressure from your spinal nerves will relieve pain and weakness in the affected areas.

The primary steps for minimally invasive lumbar decompression usually involve:

  • Making a tiny incision in the lower back
  • Spreading apart the muscles using tubes called dilators
  • Using special instruments to access and see inside the back and to remove material pinching the spinal nerves
  • Removing the instruments and suturing the incision

Most patients find that minimally invasive surgery offers numerous benefits over traditional open spinal surgery. Some of these benefits include less blood loss, decreased pain, lower infection risk, less damage to neighboring muscles and tissues, and quicker recovery.

After spending only 1-2 days in the hospital, Dr. Charla Fischer will provide detailed instructions for recovering at home. Most patients are advised to gradually increase their walking and activities, returning to normal work and activities after 4-6 weeks. Regular checkups will ensure you are making appropriate progress. Often, physical therapy is part of the recovery process. With proper expectations and adherence to your doctor’s instructions, you should expect to resume your previous lifestyle without pain or limitations following minimally invasive lumbar decompression surgery.

Dr. Fischer sees patients in her White Plain, NY and New York City offices.  Contact us today to schedule a consultation.