What is Lumbar IntelliSpine?
Lumbar IntelliSpine is a procedure that reduces the bulging or herniated disc material impinging on a spinal nerve. In this outpatient procedure, the physician accesses the spine through tiny incisions (5 millimeters or less) in the lower back and uses an HD camera and laser to visualize the lumbar spine and reduce the bulging/herniated disc material or scar tissue impinging on a spinal nerve. Recovery is very quick compared to traditional, open surgery.
The IntelliSpine Lumbar Laser Procedure is exclusive to North American Spine. A unique benefit to this procedure is that the physician is able to actually visualize the lumbar spine in real time, treating multiple levels at once. One or a combination of the following approaches may be performed on the lumbar spine:
The sacral approach is used in the lumbar spine (lower back) only. A single, 3 to 5 mm incision is made above the natural opening of the spine at the base of the sacrum. A steerable catheter is inserted through the sacrum allowing an endoscopic camera and other instruments to be guided through the spinal canal. The physician then injects dye into the epidural space to help identify the exact size and magnitude of disc bulges, herniations, or tears. Along with direct visualization, this allows the physician to treat the issue with much more accuracy than traditional procedures. The laser is fired intermittently to reduce the herniated disc tissue and seal tears in the disc, decompressing the nerve.
Benefits of IntelliSpine Lumbar Procedure
The goal of the IntelliSpine Laser Procedure is to reduce symptoms in the lower back and/or legs by relieving pressure on the nerves in the spinal canal. Compared to traditional approaches, the IntelliSpine Laser Procedure creates considerably less surgical trauma, less bone and tissue damage, and results in fewer complications and a reduced recovery period. In addition, avoiding overnight hospital stays can also mean a lower out of pocket cost for the patient. Note: we do see patients whose previous spine surgeries are no longer providing them the relief they need.
- Medical Innovators: North American Spine pioneered this exclusive laser procedure
- Treats Multiple Levels: Through direct visualization, doctors are able to see and treat multiple problem areas with more accuracy during one procedure
- Minimally Invasive: Incisions are typically only 3 millimeters
- Relief: By relieving pressure on the nerve, symptoms are significantly relieved after surgery, with continual gradual relief over time
- Outpatient: Performed as an outpatient procedure, allowing for faster recovery and lower costs than traditional surgery
- Lower Infection Rate: North American Spine facilities focus specifically on minimally invasive surgery, not on illness and infection. With an infection rate that is less than 1%, your risk of developing an infection or an illness is far lower than it would be at a large hospital
- Best Outcomes: 95% of our patients would recommend their physician
Preparing for the IntelliSpine Lumbar Procedure
Before pursuing the IntelliSpine Procedure, prospective patients should have tried conservative methods, such as physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medication, and spinal injections. If those methods have not produced meaningful relief, you may be a candidate for a North American Spine procedure.
IntelliSpine Lumbar Recovery
This procedure is usually performed on an outpatient basis, and the recovery period is typically much shorter than open spine surgery. While any surgery requires time to heal, many patients report relief within the first few days and are able to return to light activities as well.