Percutaneous Disc Nucleoplasty

Decompressing the core of the disc using a minimally-invasive procedure that uses a small needle, a cannula and advanced radiofrequency technology to relieve a herniated disc alleviates a patient’s pain symptoms.  The procedure quickly relieves the pain for most patients.  This medical procedure can be performed on an outpatient basis utilizing a mild and calming medication plus the use of a local anesthetic.

Preparation

The patient lies down on their stomach while getting ready for the procedure.  A medication to relax your nerve is given while the skin and tissue of the back is desensitized using a local anesthetic.

Inserting the Cannula

A cannula is used by a doctor for the procedure, and a fluoroscope, which is a video / x-ray device guides the cannula through the herniated disc.  

Disc Nucleus Treated

Through the cannula, a tiny radiofrequency probe is skillfully and delicately slid into the cannula then into the disc.  As the device is navigated in place, it sends out pulses of radio waves to dissipate relatively small portions of the herniated disc’s nucleus.  In practice, only ample portions of the disc are removed so as to reduce the pressure inside the disc, it is only a small portion to maintain the stability of the spinal cord.

Herniation Relieved

The empty space created by the probe allows the disc to reabsorb the herniation.

End of Procedure and After Care

After the procedure is finished, the doctor pulls the previously inserted needle and dresses the injection area. Recovery is expected to be fast and scarring is manageable since no bone or muscle parts were removed. Nevertheless, the patient is still required to take a day of bed rest after the medical procedure. Physical therapy is also highly recommended to help improve the healing process. Based on experience, patients may return to their normal routine within a week or after six weeks.