A piece of bone taken from a dead person (cadaver). These pieces of bone are treated in a way to make them clean and free of infection (bacteria and viruses). They are then stored in plastic containers in a bone bank for use as needed in fusions (See FUSION; INTERBODY FUSION).
ANTERIOR CERVICAL DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY
The name of the procedure where the neurosurgeon operates in the front of the neck and holds the patient=s breathing tube (trachea) and swallowing tube (esophagus) to one side to expose the front (anterior) of the spine. The disc (See DISC) is opened and the contents of the disc are removed using special instruments. Any disc material pressing on the spinal cord and/or nerves coming off of the spinal cord (nerve roots) is removed. If this is done using an operating microscope to improve visualization, the operation is referred to as an anterior cervical microdiscectomy.
ANTERIOR LUMBAR DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY
An operative procedure on the lumbar spine from the front (anterior).
(See ANTERIOR CERVICAL DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY)
ANTERIOR THORACIC DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY
An operative procedure done on the thoracic spine from the front (anterior).
(See ANTERIOR CERVICAL DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY)
Bone used in fusing the spine (See FUSION) taken from the patient being operated upon. A piece or pieces of bone can be taken from the large bone you can feel at the sides of your waist (iliac crest bone graft), from a bone of the lower leg (fibular graft) or pieces of bone removed while doing a laminectomy (See LAMINECTOMY). (See FUSION; INTERBODY FUSION)
As in the morphine pump (See MORPHINE PUMP) except it is to control spasms (spasticity) of the legs by the pump putting the medication, Baclofen, into the fluid around the spinal cord.
Bone to be used in fusion of the spine.
(See AUTOGRAFT; ALLOGRAFT; FUSION; INTERBODY FUSION)
These are devices that contain many small pieces of bone (bone fragments) and are placed in the empty disc space following removal of the disc material. Bone then grows across the disc space and joins the bone (vertebra) on top to the bone (vertebra) below. (See INTERBODY FUSION)
An operative procedure where the neurosurgeon removes parts of the wall (annulus) of the disc (See DISC) and removes the inside of the disc. If an operating microscope is used to do this the procedure is called microdiscectomy. (See ANTERIOR CERVICAL DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY)
A procedure where two or more bones (vertebrae) of the spine are joined together by the neurosurgeon with the use of pieces of bone (bone grafts) and something to keep the bones (vertebrae) from moving apart until the bone grows across to permanently join the bones.
When the neurosurgeon removes the right side of the lamina (See LAMINECTOMY), the procedure is called a right hemilaminectomy and on the other side the procedure would be called left hemilaminectomy.
When the neurosurgeon just makes a hole in the lamina rather than removing more bone (See LAMINECTOMY). The neurosurgeon only removes enough of the bone to accomplish the goal of the operation; sometimes the operation can be done through just a hole in the back part (lamina) of the spine.
INSTRUMENTATION/SPINAL INSTRUMENTATION/SPINE AHARDWARE
When performing an operation to join two or more bones (vertebrae) of the spine together (See FUSION), the neurosurgeon may use screws, plates, rods, wires, etc. to minimize movement of the bones of the spine (vertebrae) while the bone is growing through the bonegraft(s) to join the bones of the spine together permanently.
After removal of a disc (See DISCECTOMY/MICRODISCECTOMY), a piece of bone (See BONE GRAFT) is placed in the space that was occupied by the disc. It is like a Aspacer@; it preserves the space between the bones (vertebrae) of the spine. Over time the bone from the bone above and the bone from the bone below will grow through the bone graft and permanently join the bones (vertebrae) together.
An operative procedure where the neurosurgeon removes the back portion (posterior portion) of the bone (vertebra) or bones (vertebrae) of the spine. The neurosurgeon makes an incision in the middle of the neck/back/low back and the muscles are held to either side. The bone you can feel as a Abump@ at the back of the neck/back/low back is called the spinous process of each vertebra. It is like the peak of a roof and the entire roof is called a lamina. During a laminectomy the neurosurgeon removes both sides of the roof, including the peak of the roof, and then the neurosurgeon can see the inside of the tunnel(spinal canal) that runs down the middle of spine. It is like removing the roof of a house and looking inside the house. The spinal cord, the cable-like connection from the brain to the rest of the body, can be seen as can the nerves that come off of the spinal cord (nerve roots).
These nerves are like wires coming from the cable and going to all parts of the body. The neurosurgeon then can operate on or around the spinal cord and/or nerve roots. Most often a laminectomy is done by the neurosurgeon because a disc or disc material (See DISC) is pressing on the spinal cord and/or nerve roots. If the operation is performed on the neck, it is called a cervical laminectomy.
If the operation is performed on the spine below the neck and above the low back, it is called a thoracic laminectomy. If the operation is performed on the low back, it is called a lumbar laminectomy.
If the neurosurgeon just makes a hole in the lamina (See LAMINECTOMY) rather than remove more bone, the procedure is called a laminotomy. The neurosurgeon only removes enough bone to accomplish the procedure and sometimes it is just a hole in the back of the bone of the spine (laminotomy).
MINIMALLY INVASIVE SPINE SURGERY
This is what an operative procedure on the spine is called if the neurosurgeon operates through a lighted tube (endoscope). This allows certain procedures on the spine to be done without opening as much of the body.
Like the spinal cord stimulator to control pain (See SPINAL STIMULATOR/SPINAL CORD STIMULATOR), the neurosurgeon uses a tube attached to a small pumping box that gives small amounts of a narcotic (morphine) into the fluid surrounding the spinal cord. The pump is adjusted to deliver the dose that will give the best pain control.
APLIF@/POSTERIOR LUMBAR INTERBODY FUSION
This is an operative procedure where the neurosurgeon places specially shaped pieces of bone (bone grafts) or cages (See CAGES) where the disc was. This is an operation on the spine from behind (posterior). To expose the discs (See DISCS) from behind, a laminectomy must be done first (See LAMINECTOMY).
SPINAL STIMULATOR/SPINAL CORD STIMULATOR
This is an electrical device that a neurosurgeon may implant in a person to help control pain that has not been controlled by pain medicines (analgesics) and by TENS units (See TENS UNITS). A stimulator box is attached to a wire with an electrode on the end. The electrode is placed over the surface of the spinal cord. To attempt to control the pain, the settings on the box are changed until the best result is obtained.
360 DEGREE FUSION/ANTERIOR-POSTERIOR FUSION
This is an operative procedure to join two or more bones (vertebrae) of the spine together permanently by doing a procedure at the back of the spine (posterior fusion) as well as a procedure on the front of the spine (anterior fusion). (See FUSION; INTERBODY FUSION; APLIF@). The neurosurgeon may do both procedures under the same anesthesia or do the procedures on different days.