Post laminectomy syndrome, or failed back surgery syndrome, is described as a condition occurring in patients who have not had a successful result with back surgery or spine surgery. Spine surgery is only able to accomplish two things, decompression of a pinched nerve root or stabilization of a painful joint. Unfortunately, back surgery cannot eliminate a patient’s pain completely. Some of the reasons that pain can persist after a back surgery include preoperative nerve damage that does not heal after a decompressive surgery. Also, nerve damage can occur as a result of a surgery causing residual pain.
After a history and physical exam with your physician and reviewing MRI’s or other imaging studies, there are treatment options available for this condition. Generally treatment is focused on conservative measures first. These can include rehabilitation and some conservative pain management techniques. These techniques can include exercise, manual therapy, spinal cord stimulation and/or an implanted pump to deliver pain medication.
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