Since approval by the FDA in 1996, Epidural endoscopy plasty has been widely implemented in the world and has been proved to be effective by many studies. Unlike conventional spine procedures using only radiological imaging devices, the procedure uses an endoscope in order to observe the spinal canal and epidural regions with the naked eye and finds the cause of the pain. C-arm, a real-time imaging device and the endoscope are used in combination to maximize safety and accuracy.
During the procedure, a special catheter equipped with an endoscopic camera is inserted into the tailbone until it reaches the herniated disc, the region with the compressed nerve or stenosis. The status of the nerves or the adhesions are visually checked by the endoscope. Then, the herniated disc or the adhesions is separated from the nerves. If necessary and depending on the state of the disc, nucleopasty using a laser to reduce the size of the disc is possible. For the region to where the endoscopic camera and catheter are inserted, a skin incision of less than 5mm and consequent surgery is conducted. However, surgery under local anesthesia is possible and general anesthesia is not needed so the recovery after surgery is faster.