Candidates for Disc Nucleoplasty :-
If you have back or leg pain from a contained disc herniation or protrusion that does not respond to less invasive or more conservative therapies, you might benefit from a nucleoplasty procedure. Most back or leg pain from a contained disc herniation or protrusion gets better on its own in the first month or two, so typically physicians do not consider nucleoplasty until at least a month after the onset of back or leg pain. Also, if your back or leg pain is not severe enough to limit your activities, you probably should not have nucleoplasty.
The procedure is generally performed on an outpatient basis using a gentle, relaxing medicine and local anesthetic. The technique is as follows:
- Cannula insertion
After the doctor injects some anesthetic to numb the area where the incision is to be made, he inserts a thin needle known as a cannula through the back and into the herniated disc. He uses an X-ray imaging technique to guide the placement of the cannula.
- Treating Disc Nucleus
A small radiofrequency probe is inserted into the disc through the cannula. The device sends pulses of radio waves to dissolve small portions of disc nucleus. Since the doctor removes enough disc material to reduce the pressure inside the disc, the spine regains stablilty.
- Relieving from Herniation
The hollow created enables the disc to reabsorb the herniation. The surgeon uses heat to seal the disc.
- Post-surgery recovery
After the physician removes the treatment equipment, the insertion area is covered with a small bandage. Since no muscles or bone are cut during the procedure, recovery is fast. The patient may need a day’s bed rest after the procedure and some physical therapy, and is ready to return to normal daily activities within one to six weeks.
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