Evaluation of Degenerative Lumbar Disc Surgeries
Authors: Anubhav Sharma, Pradeep K Singh, Sohael M Khan, Shounak Taywade, Ankit Chintawar, Sparsh Naik
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Background: Back pain has been known since the start of written history, probably the first report of back pain and sciatica can be found in an ancient text, the so-called Edwin Smith Surgical Papyrus presumably written around 1550 B.C.1 Although backache (with or without sciatica) is a benign often self -limiting condition (Macnab). 2 The cost of both time lost from work (with loss of productivity) and medical care, as well as the cost of litigation and disability claims, make back pain an industry unto itself.
Purpose: The main purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical, radiological outcome of the lumbar disc patients managed surgically and to compare the results of different surgeries performed.
Methods: This study was prospective, non-randomized, cohort study it was carried out in the Department of Orthopaedics, Acharya Vinoba Bhave Rural Hospital, Wardha, between August 2013 – 2015. Patients with more than 18 years were included with persistent bothersome sciatic pain, despite conservative management for a period of 6-12 weeks. All the patients with progressive neurological involvement during a period of conservative treatment. All the patients with cauda equina syndrome or impending cauda equina syndrome.
Results: Out of total 67 patients the mean age was 49.85±8.75 years ranging from 40 to 72 years. Male gender was predominantly forming 66% of the sample size whereas 34% of females. All the patients had radicular pain, 26 out of 67 patients had left sided radiculopathy and right-sided radiculopathy was observed in 21 patients whereas 20 patients had bilateral radiculopathy. After MRI 34 patients had extrusion of disc, whereas 17 patients showed sequestrated disc, protrusion of disc was observed in 12 patients, whereas disc bulge was observed in 4 patients. 42% of patients were operated by laminectomy, 33 % patients were operated by microscopic discectomy and minimum 25% of patients were operated with microendoscopic discectomy. L4-L5 level was the most common level to get involved. Mean Pre-operative VAS score for male patients was 6.64 and female patients was 6.78, which was reduced to 3.14 and 3.48 respectively after 6 months of operative management. Mean Pre-operative Oswestery score for male patients was observed to be 44.05 and female patients was 44.87, which was reduced to 24.95 and 27.83 respectively after 6 months of operative management. Complications in all three surgeries were observed.
Conclusion: Minimally invasive techniques in all areas of surgery have gained momentum in recent years. Spinal surgery has been no exception. Unfortunately, minimally invasive techniques have often been equated with minimally effective procedures. We understand that the micro endoscopic discectomy and microscopic discectomy techniques are superior to the standard discectomy technique for the treatment of single level lumbar disc herniation’s with regard to pain relief, clinical outcome and functional outcome, volume of blood loss, systemic repercussions, and duration of hospital stay. However, technical expertise and learning curve of the technique could be the limitation. Minimally invasive surgeries are cost-effective treatment for lumbar herniated discs. Results and complications were comparable with those associated with standard discectomy techniques. Patient satisfaction was high, and a cost savings was realized.