Laminectomy
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings
Answers

What is Laminectomy?

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A laminectomy is usually done to help take pressure off your spinal cord or a nerve running out from your spinal cord. It is also done to gain access to the spinal cord, bones, and discs that are below the lamina. Ruptured discs , bony spurs, or other problems can cause narrowing of the canals that the nerves and spinal cord run through. This can irritate the nerve if it gets too narrow. Often, a laminectomy is done along with a disk removal to help make the canal larger and take pressure off the nerve being irritated.

When the spinal cord or other nerves get irritated, they can cause:

  • Weakness
  • Numbness
  • Pain in an arm or leg

Physical therapy and medicine will be tried first. The surgery is done when other treatments have not worked. It is most often done to treat...

Possible Complications

Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have a laminectomy, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Damage to nerves, resulting in pain, numbness, tingling, or paralysis
  • Problems related to anesthesia

Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

  • Another medical condition, particularly heart or lung problems
  • Obesity
  • Advanced age
  • Smoking

Be sure to discuss these risks with your doctor before surgery.

Call Your Doctor

After you leave the hospital, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:

  • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
  • Redness, swelling, increasing...
 
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