“Will my surgery be done with a laser?”
No. Every doctor at UT Erlanger Neurosurgery Group knows how to use a laser. However, it has almost zero usefulness in most spine surgeries and in fact may be harmful to you.
“What is the difference in what you do and a Laser Spine Center?”
In both cases, the main portion of the procedure consists of entering the body in a minimally invasive fashion, and then removing bone spurs and disc bulge that are compressing the nerves of the spinal cord. This is accomplished with precision utilizing an operative microscope and the best tools available to promote safety.
At laser institutes, a 2nd procedure is then performed wherein the mobile joints of the spine are burned with high energy, high heat lasers. In theory, this can reduce back pain arthritis. In reality, this probably has no impact on your outcome. At worst, you could experience thermal injuries to the spine, worsened arthritis, and injury to nerves.
“What is so great about lasers?”
Lasers are excellent at burning things in a very precise manner. However, in your spine, the last thing we want to do is burn one of the delicate nerve roots controlling your body.
“Why do I see so many ads about Laser Spine Centers?”
Lasers have always suggested cutting edge and precision. It is only natural that the term ‘Laser’ will be an effective marketing tool to capture people’s desire for the newest, best option.
In truth, lasers have almost zero usefulness in your spine surgery and can actually be harmful. The most high tech, least invasive treatment options are readily available at UT Erlanger Neurosurgery Group.