Depending on the cause of your pain, multiple treatment options are available. The most common are nonsurgical treatments such as massage therapy or use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
In some cases, patients will see a better result from surgery. If the pain is related to a herniated disc, a laminotomyor laminectomy may be performed.
A laminotomy is performed to make a larger opening in the lamina, a plate which protects the spinal canal as well as the spinal cord. The larger opening relives spinal and/or nerve pressure.
A laminectomy is performed when a laminotomy is insufficient. In a laminectomy all or part of the lamina is removed for one or more vertebrae to create more space for the nerves. A surgeon may perform a laminectomy with or without fusing vertebrae or removing part of a disc.
Surgery is not for everyone. However, for those who have shown no sign of improvement in 4 to 6 weeks and who have had CT scans or a MRI that shows a herniated disc or spinal stenosis, surgery may offer significant relief.