Back problems are one of the most common reasons to see a doctor. As per one study, approximately 80% of people experience back pain during their lifetime. Though for the vast majority of these people the pain will subside naturally without the need for surgery. While the remaining still require a proper care and medication or spine surgery to get rid of their back problems.
What is spine surgery?
Spine surgery is an invasive pain management procedure in which a specially trained doctor (the surgeon) uses instruments to make incisions to repair damaged spinal tissues. Or in other words Spine surgery whether back or neck surgery, can be sum up as an advanced treatment option for pain and disability caused by an identifiable lesion in the patient’s anatomy that has not adequately improved with non-surgical treatments. Although spinal arthritis tends to be chronic, the symptoms are rarely progressive and rarely require surgery on the painful spinal joints.
Types of Spine surgery
There are different types of Spine surgeries, which include the following:
Discectomy: is a procedure to remove a portion of the disc that rests between each vertebrae. A herniated disc is the most common reason for spine surgery. In this type of spine surgery, the herniated disc is removed and relieves the pressure on the nerves.
Foraminotomy: is also a procedure used to relieve pressure on a nerve, but in this case, the nerve is being pinched by more than just herniated disc. A foramenotomy removes a portion of bone and other tissue that may be compressing the nerve as it exits the spinal column.
Spine Fusion: is a surgery that is done to eliminate motion between adjacent vertebrae. The spine fusion may be done because to treat a problem such as spondylolisthesis (unstable spine), or it may be done because of the extent of other surgery (such as a laminectomy).
Spinal Disc Replacement: is a new surgery that is still quite uncommon. Spine disc replacement is done to treat specific types of back pain, while avoiding the problems associated with spine fusion surgery.
Anterior cervical corpectomy spine surgery: When the cervical disease encompasses more than just the disc space, the spine surgeon may recommend removal of the vertebral body as well as the disc spaces at either end, to completely decompress the cervical canal. This procedure is often done for multi-level cervical stenosis with spinal cord compression caused by bone spur (osteophytes) growth.
Cervical spine surgery: is performed for variety of cervical spine problems. Generally, surgery may be performed for degenerative disorders, trauma or instability. These conditions may produce pressure on the spinal cord or on the nerves coming from the spine. The goal this surgery is to relieve pain, numbness, tingling and weakness, restore nerve function and prevent spinal abnormal motion.
Lumbar laminectomy: is a surgical procedure most often performed to treat leg pain related to herniated discs, spinal stenosis, and other related conditions. The goal of a laminectomy is to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or spinal nerve by widening the spinal canal. This is done by removing or trimming the lamina (roof) of the vertebrae to create more space for the nerves.
Endoscopic Spine Surgery: is an operation on the lumbar spine performed using a surgical endoscope and microsurgical techniques. This type of surgery is performed by orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons who are experts in diagnosing the causes of back and neck pain and recognizing when a patient is likely to get better with surgery
Vertebroplasty: is a procedure in which a special type of synthetic cement material is injected inside the broken spine bone, giving excellent results in pain relief with very low incidence of side effects. This procedure can be safely done in osteoporotic fractures, painful spine bones after spread of cancer, non cancerous painful tumors of spine bones or to augment strength of weak spine bone prior to insertion of screws to increase the holding power of the weak bones for other surgical procedures.
Common Spinal Conditions:
Facet joint osteoarthritis: is a gradual process that breaks down cartilage between joints. The loss of cartilage causes more friction between the joints, resulting in pain and stiffness. This disorder can also result in compression of nerves, which causes pain as well.
Spinal stenosis: is a narrowing of the spinal canal or neural passageways (foramina) that can place pressure on nerves in the spinal cord. Stenosis is a gradual result of aging, and wear and tear on the spine.
Degenerative disc disease: is a gradual process that affects the structural integrity of discs. As people age, disc moisture decreases, resulting in discs that may shrink, wrinkle and even crack. These disc changes allow vertebral structures to compress, resulting in less space for nerves to exit the spinal column. The compressed nerves may swell and cause pain.
Spondylolisthesis: is a condition where one vertebra slips over another, causing spine misalignment and instability. It may be present at birth and develop over time, or be the result of physical activity or deteriorating spinal parts, such as discs.
Disc herniation: is a rupture of the disc where the inner core of the disc bulges out through the outer layer. If the bulging disc presses on a spinal nerve, the pressure can cause pain. A common symptom of a herniated disc is sciatica, the term used to describe pain that travels downward along the sciatic nerve from the buttock to the thigh and leg. Herniated discs are also known as “slipped” or “ruptured” discs.
Osteoporosis:is a disorder caused by bone mineral loss that results in fragile bones. This disorder can cause vertebral compression fractures or a humped back.
In addition to these common conditions associated with back pain, there are many other possible causes of chronic pain, including pregnancy, injury, infection and tumors. Pregnancy stresses the back and may contribute to pain that lasts several months, but generally this pain subsides and is not indicative of a chronic condition. In any case, persistent pain requires that the sufferer seek a more specific and definable problem after a wait-and-see period has elapsed.
Am I the candidate for spine surgery?
Surgery should always be the last resort when it comes to treating spinal conditions in the neck and back. However, if you have tried all the non-operative treatments without improvement or worsening over a 6-12 month period, then you become the candidate for a spine surgery for certain specific conditions such as spinal stenosis, sciatica, spondylolisthesis or degenerative scoliosis. Your decision for surgery should be individualized to the patient and the patient’s symptoms, along with their level of function.
Preparing for the surgery:
This is the most critical step towards. The surgeon's medical assistant or nurse provides the patient with a written list of instructions to follow before surgery. Instructions include how to prepare the home for post-operative care, planning for the patient's transportation needs, special information about taking current medications, to leave valuables at home, a reminder not to eat or drink anything the evening before surgery, and what time to report to the surgical facility. t the surgical facility, the patient checks in and is escorted to a pre-surgical area where the patient is prepared for surgery. Here the patient changes into a hospital gown. The patient's pre-surgical nurse verifies the patient's name, type of surgery to be performed, and reviews their medical history including allergies. An intravenous line (IV) is started. Different types of necessary medications are injected through the IV into the patient's bloodstream. Light sedating medication may be given to the patient through the IV. Some patients become so relaxed that they do not remember being taken to the operating room.
How long is the recovery?
Most patients are able to get up out of bed and start walking shortly after surgery, usually on the same or following day. For the first 6 weeks, the activity level is limited to walking and normal daily activities. Most patients are encouraged to avoid heavy lifting, frequent bending, twisting or turning or climbing during the first 6 week period. After 6 weeks, patients begin a physical therapy and exercise program to achieve rapid recovery and strength. By 3 months a gradual increase in normal activities as well as the institution of low impact sporting activities can be started. At 6 weeks, all activities are begun, including sports.
Benefits of spine surgery:
Its an easy way to get rid of your back pain
Pain free life
Almost nil postoperative pain
Potential risks associated with spine surgery include anesthesia complications, blood clots, allergic reactions and adverse effects due to undiagnosed medical problems, such as silent heart disease. Spinal nerves are extremely sensitive. One or more can be damaged during any spine surgery procedure. A spinal fusion might not bond well at the operated levels, which may ask for surgery operation.
Cost of Spine Surgery in India: The global patients traveling to India for Spine Surgery can enjoy savings of tens of thousands of dollars. They may save between 60 and 80% on costs found in the United States. Lower costs do not equate to lower quality, but lower operating costs, lower medical malpractice costs, and different healthcare systems in place in foreign destinations. The following table can give you a fair idea of the cost difference of surgery in India and different countries-
Complex spine surgery with implants
Laser Spine Surgery
Disc Replacement Surgery
Top Spine Surgeons in Our Panel:
To be qualified as a good spine surgeon in India, a surgeon is required to have the following qualifications-
MS in Orthopedic or Neuro Surgery
MCH in Spine Surgery
FRCS/MRCS from International Colleges and Hospitals
International Fellowships and Training Programs
Publications and Paper Presentations in Reputed Scientific and Medical Journals
Wide Clinical Experience.
All of our associate doctors / surgeons have trained or worked in some of the best medical institutions in United States, United Kingdom, Europe and other countries across the globe.
Our Panel of Top Spine Surgery Hospitals in India:
Choosing the correct hospital can have a significant impact on the amount of recovery following a Spine Surgery. Our Spine Hospitals in India is to provide the first technologies, the best hope, and total care in spine procedures, treatments and procedures.
Spine Hospitals are equipped with world class Infrastructure & State of Art Medical Technology being at par with US, UK and other European countries.
Most of them work according to the international benchmark set by the global medical fraternity, wherein they maintain a high level of medical services confirming all the protocols of quality and ambience.
Zero Waiting Period -No waiting period for our patients
Our Panel of hospitals in India are backed by the most comprehensive neuro-diagnostic and imaging facilities, the Neurological services extend to the very latest in diagnostic equipment such as EEG, ENMG, and Video-monitoring, PET scanning, 3 Tesla MRI and 256 Slice CT Scan.
Access to top specialists on the very same day.
High quality medical and nursing care for a fraction of the cost in major health care institutions elsewhere in the world.
International patients are looked after by specially trained nurses, and other needs are taken care of by guest relations executives, like accommodation for the companion, shopping, interpreters, currency exchange, tourism packages etc. all through their stay.
Plan your Spine Surgery in India with tour2india4health consultants:
We will provide you with the choice of finest spine surgeons, leaving no stone unturned in a concise explanation of exactly what will take place before, during and after your spine surgery procedure. You will have plenty of opportunity to discuss your needs, concerns and expectations - all of which will be thoroughly explored between yourself and a highly qualified Indian spine surgeon of our panel.
Our Medical Tourism Team will help you in choosing the best possible spine treatment and surgery for you. Leveraging on our extensive network of empanelled hospitals and hotels, we provide you with the best accommodation for you and your family that to at a very low price.
We provide facilities like quick visa letters on request by our patients, Language translators to our international patients, Foreign exchange facility.