Introduction: Chronic lumbo-sacral pain is a common and challenging clinical entity in pain management centre. The most commonly involved surgical indication are intractable leg or back pain and significant functional impairment that have been unresponsive to conservative measures. This is a level 2 evidence study where we have studied results of endoscopic discectomy and compared it to conventional discectomy procedure.
Material and Methods: We selected 40 patients with severe low back pain radiating to one or both lower limbs, which has failed to resolve after prolonged conservative treatment and have less than level 3 disc prolapse. Oswestry Disability Index (For Low Back Pain) was recorded with questionnaire response and used as clinical tool for assessment.
Results: Mean age of 40 patients was found to be 42.9 year with 80% patients having paracentral disc protrusion. Average operative time for endoscopic discectomy was 103 minutes which was higher than conventional discectomy (78 minutes). However, there was minimal blood loss compared to conventional discectomy. Based on ODI score, both endoscopic and conventional discectomy offered similar results in all grades.
Conclusion: Endoscopic discectomy is a novel, safe and effective method that minimizes invasiveness of the surgical approach. Results achieved with this method are comparable to those achieved with open discectomy in terms of relief of symptoms on longer follow up, and is significantly better in terms of early mobilisation and morbidity as there is minimal tissue trauma.