Types of Spine SurgeryFind a Spine Surgeon
Why Do I Need Spine Surgery?
Many people experience periodic neck or back pain. However, if pain does not improve with nonsurgical treatment, you may be a candidate for spine surgery.
You may benefit from neck surgery or back surgery if you have:
- Degenerative disc disease: Chronic damage to your spinal discs.
- Herniated discs: When one or more discs push through the cushioning in your spine.
- Scoliosis: A curving of the spine that can cause deformity or damage to internal organs.
- Spinal stenosis: A narrowing of your spinal column that can put pressure on your nerves.
- Spondylolisthesis: When one or more bones in your spinal column slips out of place.
- Vertebral fractures: Spine fractures, often occurring because of accidents or osteoporosis.
Types of Spine Surgery
Fellowship-trained spine surgeons and neurosurgeons both perform back and spine surgery. At Nuvance Health, these specialists collaborate closely to offer you an optimal treatment plan.
Common types of spine surgery include:
- Cervical disc replacement: During this procedure, a surgeon removes damaged disc portions or the entire disc and replaces it with a bone graft or artificial parts. Benefits include more mobility, quicker recovery, improved function and lower risk of future pain.
- Foraminotomy: During a foraminotomy, the surgeon widens the area around the bones in your spinal column. This procedure relieves pressure on compressed nerves.
- Laminectomy: A laminectomy involves removing all or part of the lamina (the back part of the bone that covers your spinal canal). The goal is decrease compression to your spinal cord. Laminectomy is a common spinal stenosis treatment.
- Microdiscectomy: In this minimally invasive procedure, a surgeon removes pieces of a herniated or ruptured disc to relieve back pain.
- Kyphoplasty: A kyphoplasty treats a compression fracture. The surgeon uses a balloon and special cement to stabilize the bone. The procedure restores some height to the compressed vertebrae (bones that form your spinal column).
- Spinal fusion: Spinal fusions permanently connect two or more vertebrae. You may need a spinal fusion to treat spinal instability, scoliosis or a herniated disc.
Innovative surgery techniques
One of Nuvance Health’s surgeons was among the first in the country to perform a unique procedure called the single position direct lateral interbody fusion.
With this technique, surgeons can reconstruct the spine with a lateral and posterior approach in single surgical position. Benefits include:
- Faster recovery
- Fewer incisions
- Less radiation
- Reduced need for anesthesia
- Shortened or no hospital stay
What is Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?
We use minimally invasive techniques whenever possible. During minimally invasive surgery, your surgeon uses tiny surgical tools and a high-tech camera to operate through one or a few small incisions.
Benefits of minimally invasive spine surgery include:
- Decreased pain
- Faster recovery
- Less blood loss
- Lower risk of complications, including lower risk of infection
- Shorter hospital stays
Robot-assisted spine surgery
Robot-assisted surgery is a type of minimally invasive surgery. Surgeons use robotic devices to operate with even higher degrees of precision and accuracy.
At Nuvance Health, spine surgeons use the Globus Medical ExcelsiusGPS for multiple types of spine surgeries. Using this technology means we can perform complex spinal fusions in only one procedure, instead of through multiple operations.
Leaders in Reconstructive Spine Surgery
Spinal reconstructive surgery is an advanced specialization that requires additional training to reconstruct bones, joints, tendons and ligaments.
Reconstructive spine surgery is only appropriate for patients who have severe spine conditions and should only be performed by specially trained surgeons. At Nuvance Health, spine surgeons have experience and training to perform these procedures.
Recovery from Spine Surgery
After spine surgery, you may work with rehabilitation specialists in your home or at an outpatient location. Specialists may include:
- Occupational therapists: These specialists help you improve your function so you can perform daily tasks on your own.
- Physical therapists: A physical therapist may prescribe a series of exercises to help you improve strength, mobility and flexibility.
To learn more about spine surgery, you may download our patient guidebook:
Patient Guide to Inpatient Spine Surgery-Danbury Hospital (PDF)
Find out more about how our outpatient rehabilitation services fit into your recovery plan after spine surgery.