Medial Facetectomy – Frisco, TX
OrthoTexas, Frisco is a renowned group of spine surgeons, offering hands-on treatment for various orthopedic condition. Based on the severity of a condition and health requirements of the patients, the surgeons adopt surgical as well as non-surgical treatment procedures.

Medial Facetectomy

The human spine is made up of small bones called vertebrae that are stacked one above the other. These are linked by small bony structures called the facets. Each vertebrae has two facet joints which allow us to bend, walk, straighten and flex the spine. In between the adjacent vertebrae are the soft membranous tissue pads called the intervertebral discs. The facets help to keep the spine stable while the intervertebral discs act as shock absorbers. Some factors lead to the degeneration of these facet joints and they start impinging upon the adjoining nerves causing a lot of physical discomfort. Medial Facetectomy is a surgical procedure that aims at relieving symptoms of this condition.

Who is a Candidate for Medial Facetectomy?

  • Suffering from Spondylosis or Facet Joint Syndrome (degeneration of the cartilage around the facet joint)
  • Having limited range of motion and movement is painful
  • Suffering from chronic pain for more than 3-4 months in spite of conservative methods of treatment
  • Sudden trauma has caused damage to the spine
  • Weakness, tingling sensation or numbness in the extremities
  • If the condition affects the person’s ability to perform daily tasks

Medial Facetectomy: The Procedure

  • The process is minimally invasive and takes about 1-2 hours depending on the patient’s condition and level of spinal disorder
  • A general anesthesia is administered
  • An incision (1- 2 inches) is made in the back to get access to the spinal cord and the muscles and tissues are pushed apart or retracted for a better view
  • One or more of the vertebrae within the facet joint are removed using a small drill saw
  • This releases the pressure on the spinal nerve
  • The point of incision is stitched back using sutures. These are removed after two weeks of surgery
  • Sometimes additional implants may be required to stabilize the spine after removing the vertebrae. It is done during the surgical process if required

Recovery Process

  • The patient is shifted to a recovery room post-surgery and is encouraged to begin walking as soon as it is possible
  • A physical therapy session may be prescribed to help improve the spinal flexibility as well as regain strength
  • Activity modification- certain body movements such as bending, twisting and lifting weights are prohibited post-surgery for a couple of weeks to avoid stressing the spine
  • Sitting for long without moving should be avoided as it may lead to DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis)
  • Driving should be avoided for a few weeks
  • Regular follow ups and MRI or CT scans may be required to keep a tab on the recovery of the spine

For surgical treatment of various spinal conditions, visit OrthoTexas, Frisco. To schedule an appointment with the spine specialists, call at (214) 618 – 5502.