Lumbar & Thoracic Spine Care in Sonora

Comprehensive procedures for specific spine conditions

The thoracic region consists of 12 vertebrae that serve as attachment points for the ribcage. The lumbar region consists of five vertebrae in the lower back and is the main weight-bearing section of the spine.

One of the most common lumbar/thoracic spine conditions is lumbar radiculopathy (sciatica). This condition is an irritation or compression of one or more nerve roots in the lumbar spine causing pain, weakness, numbness and tingling in the hips, buttocks, legs or feet.

Common surgical treatments for lumbar and thoracic spine conditions include:

  • Lumbar disc microsurgery: This minimally invasive technique is used to remove just the herniated portion of a vertebral disc. Healthy disc material is left in place to cushion the vertebrae. It is 95 percent to 98 percent effective in eliminating leg pain (sciatica) caused by nerve-root compression.
  • Laminectomy: This procedure relieves pressure on the nerve roots caused by stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal canal, by removing a section of bone, called the lamina, from one or more vertebrae.
  • Posterior lumbar interbody fusion (PLIF): PLIF is generally used to treat back or leg pain caused by degenerative disc disease. The damaged disc is partially removed, bone grafts are placed in the empty disc space, and screws and rods may be used to provide additional support. Once the bone graft grows through and around the implants, a bone bridge connects the vertebrae above and below. This solid bone bridge is called a fusion.