Arthroscopic Lumbar Decompression: The Foraminal Approach
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Endoscopic disc surgery is evolving rapidly because of improvements in surgical technique, endoscope design, and instrumentation. These third-generation systems with excellent optics give the endoscopic spine surgeon the ability to probe spinal anatomy in a conscious patient and evaluate the pathologic process causing the patient’s pain. Now that spinal endoscopy can be performed, conditions previously not even considered for surgery may be evaluated and managed.
Patients who previously were not candidates for traditional surgery may find relief with endoscopic spine surgery directed toward the pain generator. Our understanding of discogenic back pain is enhanced by diagnostic and surgical endoscopy of the lumbar spine, as endoscopic visualization of pathologic lesions not previously seen with traditional techniques is increasing our understanding of the pain generators in the lumbar spine.