A board-certified orthopaedic spine surgeon; Paul Saiz, MD, has more than decade of surgical experience. His specialties include diseases, disorders, and trauma of the neck and spine. Dr. Saiz currently practices at Las Cruces Orthopaedic Associates in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
There are two basic types of spine surgery. The first typically addresses pinched nerves. This procedure involves removing anatomy (bone, ligaments, or a disc) in order to open up space surrounding the nerves. This might involve a laminectomy (the complete removal of the lamina which is the back part of the spinal canal) or a laminotomy; which is only a partial removal of the lamina.
The second common surgery is a fusion. A spine fusion fuses two or more vertebrae together by stimulating new bone growth in the disc space between the vertebrae. This permanent immobilization seeks to eliminate pain. The new bone growth takes months to occur, so surgeons utilize instrumentation such as screws and rods to aid the fusion.