Does your back always hurt? Pain that won’t go away is most commonly identified as chronic back pain. It’s is common practice for people living with severe pain to think and eventually go for a surgery. While it is a decision that purely your doctor and you can make. But a few things prior to surgery will help you form your decision.
If you are to deal with a Surgery, Timing Matters:
Back surgery is not rushed for most of the cases. Patients with a herniated disc or degenerative spine conditions that usually worse slowly with time are made to wait for a cycle of 6 weeks prior to surgery. This is due to the time given to body to see if it heals own its own. This can also help determine whether conservative treatments like spinal injections and physical therapy could work for the patient. But some reasons could clearly demonstrate why you may be requiring a surgery sooner, later or right away. Conditions like unrelenting pain and neurological symptoms as such as foot drop, or a spinal cord injury won’t hold your surgeon for long.
Surgery isn’t a requirement for Most Back Pains:
There are definite treatments designed to ease back pain that won’t require going under knife or laser. These treatments include the use of (NSAIDS) nonsteroidal and anti-inflammatory medications. Ice, heat spinal injections, physical therapy, and ibuprofen has also been shown to benefit the patients a great deal. Regular exercise is scientifically a proven way to ease back pain and preventing it to come back.
A surgeon will only recommend a back surgery if other treatments have been tried or until or unless a person has a serious spinal cord injury.
Thousands of people undergo surgical surgery every year for following reasons:
- A slipped disk that won’t heal on its own
- Bone spurs in the spine most often caused by arthritis. These spurs put direct pressure on the spinal cord
- A degenerative spinal condition is commonly known as stenosis. Responsible for narrowing of the protective bony canal around the spinal cord. That in result cause side effects like acute weakness.
- Weakness or numbness experienced in the arms and legs
- Walking with limp or trouble using your hands
- Problem with the nerves that cause lost bladder or bowel control.
- Spinal infection followed by a high fever and back pain — this can be a sign of a spinal infection
- A broken bone in the back that maybe dislocated
- A spinal condition accompanying a tumor.
Talking to a surgeon doesn’t necessarily means you are going under surgery. This is a chance to educate you about your condition and treatment options. Surgeons mostly decide not to put people under a surgery. Instead, they support treatments like spinal injections and physical therapy. Imaging tests to make a diagnosis in order to clarify whether surgery will help remove the cause or not is also a common practice.
What is Failed Back Surgery Syndrome (FBSS)?
A Failed back surgery might be a product Failed Back Surgery Syndrome. It is just a misnomer, not a syndrome. This generalised term describes the conditions of the patient that went under a back surgery but didn’t experience any desired results. In fact, the surgery radiated a continual pain in the patient’s back. It should be noted that no equivalent term is used for failed back surgery syndrome in another form of surgery. For example, there’s no concept of a failed cardiac surgery syndrome or a failed knee surgery syndrome etc.
Enough reasons are present that support a back surgery may or may not work. With the best surgeon or most right indications, spine surgery is nothing more than a prediction of 95 percent successful result.
Prevalence of Pain after Surgery
There are some surgeries that are greatly predictable when it comes to alleviating a patient’s symptoms.
- A discectomy for lumbar disc herniation that causes leg pain is quite predictable. On the contrary, a discectomy for a lumbar disc herniation that causes lower back pain is less likely to be a success.
- A spine fusion or spinal instability is quite predictable. On the contrary, a multi-level lumbar degenerative disc disease is less likely to be a success in reducing a person’s pain.
The best way to avoid a spine surgery that doesn’t end up in desired results is to switch to non-invasive treatments that have a higher degree of success rate. It should also ensure an anatomic lesion that’s often controllable to a surgical correction is identified properly.
When is Back Surgery the Right Choice?
In our opinion, the only spinal conditions that require surgery are:
- Fractured, or broken, vertebrae
- Certain infections
Otherwise, we strongly advise all of our patients not to undergo spinal surgery.
Instead, we believe the correct approach is to decompress or mobilise the spine using non-invasive techniques that are based on Orthopaedic Medicine.
The surgical approach to solving back conditions is quite frankly, brutal. For example, in cases where the intervertebral disc is either bulging or herniated, the surgeon will remove some or all of the disc to lower the pressure on the nerve fibres – a procedure known as a Discectomy (disc-ectomy, pronounced disektomy).
But, in the absence of a disc, the spine will not function properly; it becomes unstable. To combat this, the surgeon performs a spinal Fusion, literally welding the two vertebrae (which previously surrounded the disc) together.
We suggest you to review our non-invasive back pain treatment technology before you take the risk of spine surgery