Laser Discectomy

A laser discectomy is one in which the burning force of the laser is used to burn away disc material to remove a herniated lumbar disc. This procedure requires the same bony opening done in a conventional lumbar discectomy, thus no change from a conventional approach. The difference being that the laser is used to burn away the disc once the open operation has been performed. Conventional instruments used to grasp the disc, or scrape some of the disc out of the disc space works quite well without the effect of burning the tissue. Once the tissue surrounding the disc has been burned by the laser there is, in our opinion, a higher chance of causing a disc space infection and inflammation in the bone, which could lead to long term antibiotic use, additional pain and no advantage to conventionally removing the disc material. Thus, in our opinion, there is no advantage to the lumbar laser discectomy and perhaps some additional risks to the procedure. We have not performed this operation for these reasons.

Testimonials Patient Portal Schedule an Appointment

After an airplane crash in the mountains, I was rescued & airlifted to a trauma center with a broken back. Images were showing bone fragments pushing well into the spinal canal threatening paralysis of the lower half of my body which was not good news particularly for us newlyweds. Consulting with the trauma team, we compiled a short list of top neurosurgeons in Los Angeles area which included Dr. Jose Rodriguez.

When we contacted him, he assembled a surgical team and operated on me. I recovered quickly under Dr. Rodriguez' post operative care and physiotherapy. Within days, I started walking without any nerve damage and within a few months was swimming laps as I was doing before the injury. I am extremely grateful to Dr. Rodriguez and his outstanding team.

November 13, 2013

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