Sometimes a narrowing of the spinal canal can lead to less room for the nerves, which causes them to be pinched. We call this spinal stenosis. Not all pinched nerves are caused by spinal stenosis, but when it occurs in the low back it can cause serious symptoms that could require surgery.
If you have a lumbar herniated disc in your spine (sometimes called a "slipped" or "ruptured" disc), you've probably gotten several opinions from spine doctors regarding surgical options for your condition. Surgery may help to alleviate your pain and increase your mobility, but it's important to know all the information about the pros and cons of surgical treatment before deciding to go this route.
When a surgeon recommends an operation, it is generally a good idea to get a second opinion. Not all surgeons are alike. Different surgeons look at spine problems differently and there are multiple ways to get a good result. It helps a patient to get another perspective on the problem, including recommended options and possible outcomes.
Occasionally, spine surgery doesn't provide the relief patients expect. In fact, 20 to 50 percent of the patients that visit Dr. Jatana's practice have had previous back surgery with another surgeon and are seeking a second opinion on how to resolve continuing pain. The good news is that in many cases, the cause of the pain can be identified and addressed. In this Q and A, Dr. Jatana discusses this condition, formally known as Failed Back Surgery Syndrome.