Minimally Invasive Lumbar Decompression
Percutaneous image-guided lumbar decompression (PILD)
Some injuries and conditions in the spine cause the spinal cord to compress and put pressure on the nerves. This is known as spinal stenosis.
If you’re suffering from back pain caused by spinal stenosis, your doctors will likely try to treat it using conservative methods like physical therapy or medicine. However, if these medications do not work or if your pain is just too strong, you may need percutaneous image-guided lumbar decompression (PLID).
What is PLID?
PLID is a form of spinal compression surgery. There are a few different ways surgeons can decompress the spine to reduce pain, but PLID is a newer and more minimally invasive method that can help many people with lower back pain.
PLID is performed without the use of incisions or invasive surgical instruments. Instead, the surgeon uses a small needle to remove a small portion of the lamina from your spine. The lamina is the part of the spine that often puts pressure on the nerves in spinal stenosis.
Who needs PLID?
PLID offers many advantages over other spinal decompression procedures because it is so minimally invasive. It does not require any incisions or long and painful recovery periods, although your doctor will recommend some rest and provide recovery advice.
PLID is not for everyone. People with spinal stenosis causing the disc to herniate or other large types of damage in the spine may benefit from other treatments. PLID is for people with central spinal stenosis, which is when the nerve housing grows more narrow unrelated to herniated discs and similar conditions.
Is PLID safe?
PLID is considered a safe procedure. Complications during PLID are rare because it’s so minimally invasive. Still, potential complications that can occur include:
- Nerve damage
- Blood loss
- Loss of spinal fluid
- Herniated disc