What is a laminectomy?

Laminectomy, also called decompression laminectomy, is a surgical procedure to reduce the pressure on the spinal cord or spinal nerve roots caused by spinal stenosis.

Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of the spinal canal. The condition puts pressure on your nerves or spinal cord, which leads to pain, numbness, or weakness in the legs, back, neck and arms.

How it works

Decompression laminectomy reduces the pressure on the spinal cord or spinal nerve roots caused by spinal stenosis.

In a decompression laminectomy, surgery is done on the spine to remove the rear portion of one or more spinal bones known as lamina, and a thickened layer of the ligament known as the ligamentum flavum.

By removing these parts, the spinal canal is enlarged and pressure on the spine is relieved. This, in turn, helps to relieve back pain.

Why do you need a laminectomy?

Spinal laminectomy reduces the symptoms caused by pressure in your spine and helps you return to normal activities.

Laminectomy can also be used to treat spinal injuries, herniated discs (slipped discs) and spinal tumours.

What are the risks and complications of a laminectomy?

Decompression laminectomy is considered to be a low-risk procedure that is generally successful in relieving the symptoms of spinal stenosis. However, like any other surgery, it carries a small risk.

The surgical risks include:

  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Leakage of spinal fluid
  • Nerve injury
  • Wound infection

The majority of patients see an improvement in symptoms after 6 weeks. However, for some patients, the pain may persist or return.

Why choose Mount Elizabeth Hospitals?

Mount Elizabeth Hospitals have a reputable 40-year track record in orthopaedic health in Singapore.

Our multidisciplinary team of orthopaedic surgeons, consultants and therapists work together to deliver accurate diagnosis and effective treatments for patients with back and spinal problems.

Patients undergoing laminectomy will recover in the comfort and privacy of our elegantly-furnished private hospital rooms with full amenities.

Estimated cost

Private healthcare can be affordable. Use our Hospital Bill Estimator to determine the estimated cost of this procedure. If you have hospital insurance, find out how you can use your insurance.

Our orthopaedic surgeons and neurosurgeons

Our team of bone surgeons and neurosurgeons possess expertise and skill in a wide range of orthopaedic conditions.

This page has been reviewed by our medical content reviewers.

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