Dec, 2017

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posted in Wilka, Welter & Ash LLP Law Blog.

Lumbar Laminectomy Complications Patients Should Know About

Lumbar Laminectomy Complications Patients Should Know About

When it comes to a personal injury attorney, Sioux Falls residents who had this type of surgery and experienced complications might consider legal action if the healthcare team is determined to be at fault. The first step is knowing what the possible complications are, so that you know what to look for following your surgery.

A lumbar laminectomy is a surgical procedure performed on the lumbar area of the spine to alleviate any pressure that is on the nerves of the spine which in turn should alleviate the patient’s pain and other symptoms. During a lumbar laminectomy the surgeon will locate the back of the spinal canal and very carefully remove a part of its bony covering to help take some of all of the pressure off the affected spinal nerves. Since a lumbar laminectomy is a surgical procedure there is a risk of complications and some can be quite serious.

Blood Clots

There is the potential with a blood clot in those who have this surgery. If a blood clot lodges itself in the lungs it can cause serious problems such as lowering the amount of oxygen in the blood, permanent lung damage due to the lung tissue not receiving an adequate supply of blood and sometimes death. Blood clots may also cause damage to other organs due to insufficient oxygen.

Nerve Damage

Nerve damage can occur as a result of this surgery. This complication may occur if one or more nerves are damaged during surgery, which could possibly be due to a mistake on the surgeon’s part, but not always. If a nerve or nerves do become damaged the patient may experience pain, tingling or numbness. If these symptoms are especially bothersome, persistent or severe the patient may need to have another surgery to repair the nerves if the nerve damage can be repaired.

Ongoing Pain

The main purpose of a lumbar laminectomy is to alleviate pressure on the spinal nerves to help reduce or eliminate the patient’s pain and other symptoms. Not all patients will experience a reduction in their pain though. Some patients may even experience an increase in their pain. If this occurs the patient may need to have the surgery repeated or their doctor may suggest another type of spinal surgery.

You can see that this surgery is quite complex and there is the risk for complications. It is critical that you are aware of these, so that you know what you should be looking for while you are in the recovery phase. If you experience complications, notify your doctor immediately. If an issue during the surgery is the cause, you might also consider talking to a personal injury lawyer in Sioux Falls.