Laser spine surgery is a fast growing subsector of the back surgery industry. Lasers have revolutionized the way many surgical procedures are executed and have increased the number and scope of minimally invasive back surgery techniques available. Of course, laser procedures are still surgery and should never be taken lightly. In fact, many patients continue to suffer many of the same back surgery complications after undergoing a laser procedure as they would after any other type of operative intervention. Never let any doctor downplay the seriousness of an operation just because it is performed using laser technology.
This essay examines some of the benefits offered by laser spinal operations, as well as providing warnings on the downside of surgical treatment for back or neck symptoms.
Laser Spine Surgery Facts
Laser procedures have the distinct advantage of faster healing in many cases, as well as a lessened chance for cross contamination during the operation. However, there are still many risks and complications inherent to any back surgery including: risk of infection, risk of nerve damage, risk of spinal fluid leak, risk of anesthesia and the most unfortunate possibility, failed back surgery syndrome.
Laser surgeries are replacing many traditional open techniques for treating a great number of suspected causes of back pain. Many surgery centers deal almost exclusively in laser-based operations, allowing surgeons to develop extreme levels of proficiency with these high-tech tools.
I have interviewed many spinal surgeons who now swear by laser instruments and say they could never go back to utilizing traditional surgical implements. This is a very ringing endorsement, for sure.
Positive Aspects of Laser Surgery
The distinct advantage of laser back surgeries is that they can be completed with pinpoint accuracy, doing as little damage as possible to healthy tissues. Lasers can be utilized through the smallest of incisions, practically guaranteeing the patient of a truly minimally invasive operation.
There are laser back surgery procedures available to treat a wide range of suspected causative conditions, including special “laser only” versions of the most popular techniques performed worldwide for the most commonly diagnosed back pain causes.
Lasers are also useful in patients with specific health conditions and disorders that might otherwise preclude them from seeking surgical treatment for dorsal pain problems.
Laser Spine Surgery Cautions and Guidance
Many orthopedic surgeons and neurosurgeons are using specialized marketing techniques to lull patients into a false sense of calm over laser surgery. Some even liken it to LASIK or other minor surgical procedures. This is simply an outright lie.
Surgery is surgery, regardless of the tools utilized. When any implement is used to operate on the spine or any of its structures, there is always the potential for catastrophic consequences.
Do not be fooled into thinking, “It is just laser surgery”. That being said, I like laser based procedures far more than any full open intervention, since damage to healthy tissues is minimized and recovery time is considerably lessened.
It always pays to receive several professional surgical opinions before even thinking about actually undergoing back surgery. If you are considering using a laser technique, seek out the best and most experienced surgeon who will use the least invasive methods possible.