Paul W. Millhouse, MD, Gregory D. Schroeder, MD, Mark F. Kurd, MD, Christopher K. Kepler, MD, MBA, Alexander R. Vaccaro, MD, PhD, MBA, and Jason W. Savage, MD
Lumbar disk herniations occur frequently and are often associated with leg pain, weakness, and paresthesias. Fortunately, the natural outcomes of radiculopathy due to a disk herniation are generally favorable, and the vast majority of patients improve with nonoperative care. Surgical intervention is reserved for patients who have significant pain that is refractory to at least 6 weeks of conservative care, patients who have a severe or progressive motor deficit, or patients who have any symptoms of bowel or bladder dysfunction. This paper reviews the preoperative and postoperative considerations, as well as the surgical technique, for a microdiscectomy for a lumbar intervertebral disk herniation.