Microdiscectomy refers to a trimming or removal of a disc that is bulging against a nerve.
Most of the time a portion of the disc can be removed to decompress the nerve without requiring its entire removal. If the entire disc has to be removed, the procedure will usually involve fusion. A microdiscectomy procedure is performed under a microscope, allowing for a smaller incision and a more precise operation because of the magnification and illumination that an operating room microscope allows.
Patients are typically discharged to home the day of surgery or the following day after this microdiscectomy procedure. Outcomes for relief of nerve pain are very good, in the range of 80% to 90% efficacy.
To learn more, please visit our Animations section and select the video "PLIF: Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion."