Lumbar decompression is a general term used to refer to various surgical procedure that are performed to alleviate pain caused when nerves become trapped (called neural impingement) in the spine’s lumbar (lower back) area.
During lumbar decompression surgery, a small portion of the bone over the nerve root and/or disc material from under the nerve root is removed to give the nerve root more space and provide a better healing environment.
The two most common procedures performed to decompress nerves in the lumbar area are:
Microdiscectomy – Typically performed when the patient has a herniated disc
Lumbar Laminectomy – Typically performed on patients who suffer from spinal stenosis in their lower backs