Spinal Decompression Coconut Creek, FL
Spinal decompression uses surgical and non-surgical techniques to help relieve chronic back pain, neck pain, or sciatica. Spinal decompression therapy is necessary to keep the bones that form the spine, or vertebrae, from squeezing the spinal discs that cushion them. Excess pressure on the discs can cause them to bulge out and compress the spinal cord and nerves, resulting in pain or numbness.
At Interventional Pain & Wellness Center, we offer spine decompression therapy for patients who have undergone an injury or have an ongoing health condition. Our team can help you get back on your feet and learn to manage your own pain and symptoms at home. To learn more about a procedure or schedule an appointment, call (954) 707-6939 today.
Understanding Spinal Decompression
The goal of spinal decompression therapy is to alleviate pressure on the spinal nerves causing pain. There are two approaches to spinal decompression: non-surgical and surgical. In non-surgical spinal decompression, we use a traction table to gently stretch the spine, changing the force and position of the vertebrae to take pressure off the spinal discs.
In surgical decompression, back surgery can help repair ruptured spinal discs, remove bony growths, or correct other problems that pressure the spinal cord or nerves. We can help patients determine if they are candidates for spinal decompression, surgical decompression, or an alternative treatment during a consultation.
Non-surgical vs. Surgical Spinal Decompression
Non-surgical spinal decompression applies the principles of spinal traction used by chiropractors, osteopathic doctors, regenerative doctors, pain specialists, and physical therapists. Using a motorized traction table helps intermittently stretch and relax the spine to create negative pressure between the vertebrae. This negative pressure helps to reposition bulging disc material and promote disc healing.
Spinal decompression surgery is reserved as a last resort treatment. Various procedures target specific spine problems, e.g., herniated discs, degenerative disc disease, worn spinal joints, or damaged nerve roots. Surgeries for spinal decompression include:
- Laminectomy. Removing a section of the bone to increase the size of the spinal canal
- Microdiscectomy. Removing a portion of the disc that is pressing against nerves
- Foraminotomy. Removing bone around the opening where the nerve roots exit the vertebrae
- Osteophyte removal. Removing bony growths that push on nerves or other structures
- Corpectomy. Removing the offending vertebra along with the discs
Spinal Decompression Procedures
During a non-surgical spinal decompression procedure, the patient wears a harness around their hips that is attached to a motorized traction table. The lower part of the table slides back and forth while the upper part is fixed. Lying face up or face down, the table movements provide traction to stretch and relax the spine. This technique is not painful, but patients will feel the stretch.
When conservative care fails to relieve pain, spinal decompression surgery may be effective. Patients first undergo imaging to assess the location and extent of spinal compression. The surgeon will make a small incision over the affected vertebrae while the patient is under anesthesia. Then, they will remove a portion of bone or disc material to release pressure from the spinal nerve responsible for pain. Sometimes, they may recommend a bone graft or hardware (metal rods and screws) to add extra support for the newly decompressed spine. The patient will need to stay in the hospital for 24 to 48 hours following surgery.
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Spinal Decompression Candidates
Candidates for spinal decompression are people who suffer from persistent lower back, neck, or leg pain typically caused by a bulging or herniated disc. Surgery is a last resort when non-surgical approaches do not work to relieve pain. Non-surgical approaches that stretch the spine are not appropriate for patients with:
- Artificial disc or other spinal implants
- Broken vertebrae
- Failed back surgery
- Spinal conditions that affect the curvature
- Spinal fusion
- Spinal stenosis, spinal tumor, or spinal infection
Continuing Treatment and Follow-Up Care
Spinal traction lasts between 20 and 45 minutes; we will recommend the number of sessions depending on the individual's condition and pain. On the other hand, surgery is an inpatient procedure, and patients must follow special aftercare instructions closely. Full recovery can take three to a year, depending on the procedure.
Post-surgery, the patient will likely be prescribed a physical therapy regimen to strengthen their spine along with specific instructions on maintaining posture while sitting, standing, and sleeping. Medication may be provided to help manage postsurgical pain. Follow-up appointments will continue every few months for a couple of years, and the patient will likely undergo imaging to gauge how their back is healing.
Frequently Asked Questions About Spinal Decompression
Q. How does the spine get compressed?
A. Spinal compression often occurs after an injury or a degenerative condition that causes the spinal canal or nerve root openings to narrow, putting pressure on the spinal cord and nerves.
Q. What is a herniated disc?
A. A herniated disc may also be described as a pinched nerve, ruptured disc, bulging disc, or slipped disc. Between individual vertebrae is a disc that functions as a shock absorber. The disc has a soft jelly-like center and a rubbery exterior, but if it tears or gets squeezed, the gel can push out and compress the spinal cord.
Q. Is non-surgical spinal decompression effective?
A. While non-surgical approaches to spinal decompression have been shown to relieve pressure on the spine and thereby reduce pain, clinical evidence is lacking, and future studies are needed to support spinal traction methods in evidence-based care.
Q. When is surgical spinal decompression appropriate?
A. Back surgery is serious and involves a long recovery period; therefore, surgery is reserved for severe cases and only after conservative treatments fail to correct the problem or alleviate pain.
Q. How long before I get back to work after surgery?
A. Depending on the procedure, an otherwise healthy patient may return to work in 4 to 6 weeks if their job is non-strenuous. However, it can take 3 to 4 months for the bones to heal fully and a year before a patient resumes normal activity.
Start Feeling Better – Visit Us Today
By visiting us as soon as possible, our team can help get you the professional treatment you need. Instead of waiting around and allowing the symptoms to get worse, we can provide you with treatment options.
Schedule a Visit Today
Spinal decompression techniques can help relieve persistent back, neck, or leg pain that results from a herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, or nerve root issues. Spinal decompression consultations and treatments are available at our office. The Interventional Pain & Wellness Center team looks forward to treating you and helping you on your road to recovery. Call our office at 954-707-6939 to learn more or schedule an appointment.
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- Interventional Pain & Wellness Center was established in 2018.
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