Cervical Foraminotomy

Cervical foraminotomy is an operative procedure to relieve the symptoms of pinched nerve by expanding the neural foramen. It can also be done through a minimal invasive approach.

The neural foramen is an opening for the nerve roots to exit from the spine and travel throughout the body. It forms a protective passageway for nerves that transmit signals among the spinal cord and the rest of the body parts. A cervical foraminotomy is a surgical procedure that enlarges the neural foramen or passageway.

Modern cervical foraminotomy is a minimally invasive procedure in which muscle fibres surrounding the spine are separated without cutting and stripping the muscles from the spine region, unlike the conventional open spine surgery which requires spine muscles to be cut or stripped.

Who requires this procedure?

Conditions such as herniated discs, bone spurs, and thickened ligaments or joints can narrow the neural foramen and pinch the spinal nerves. A pinched nerve in the neck region can cause neck pain, stiffness and/or pain, tingling sensation, numbness or weakness that radiates down to the arm and hand. Patients with these symptoms who fail to show improvement with non-surgical therapy require cervical foraminotomy procedure.

How is the procedure performed?

Procedure
The procedure is done with the patients resting on their stomach.

Decompression
Your surgeon makes a small incision on the symptomatic side of your neck and approaches the spine by bringing the neck muscles apart using a tubular retractor. Then, the bone or disc material and/or the thickened ligaments are removed relieving the pressure on spinal nerve structures creating decompression. Afterwards, the neck muscles are brought back by removing the tubular retractor.

Closure
After the procedure, your surgeon closes the incision which might develop into a small scar.

After the procedure
Since the procedure is minimally invasive, most of the patients can be discharged on the day of surgery itself, but some patients may need a longer hospital stay. After surgery, the pain symptoms may improve immediately or gradually over the course of time. Compliance with your surgeon’s post-operative instructions may give a better outcome. You will be able to resume your daily activities within a few weeks.

  • Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital

    NHS

    Ashford and St Peter’s
    Hospital
    NHS Foundation Trust
    Guildford Road, Cherstey,
    Surrey, KY16 0PZ.
    Ph: 01932 872 000
  • The BMI Runnymede Hospital

    Private

    The BMI
    Runnymede Hospital
    Guildford Road,
    Ottershaw, CHERTSEY,
    KT16 0RQ.
    Ph: 01932 877800
  • Spire St Anthony’s Hospital

    Private

    Spire St Anthony’s
    Hospital
    801 London Road,
    NORTH CHEAM,
    SM3 9DW.
    Ph: 020 8337 6691
  • Nuffield Health Woking Hospital

    Private

    Nuffield Health
    Woking Hospital
    Shores Road,
    WOKING,
    GU21 4BY.
    Ph: 01483 331257
  • Ramsay Health Ashtead Hospital

    Private

    Ramsay Health
    Ashtead Hospital
    The Warren,
    Ashtead, Surrey.
    KT21 2SB.
    Ph: 01372 221400