Laminectomy of the cervical spine is one of the most commonly performed surgeries for neck pain from cervical stenosis and spondylosis. Because the cervical spine is more mobile than the rest of the spine and because the cervical spine is holding up the weight of the head (essentially a small bowling ball), it is perhaps more susceptible to instability than the thoracic or lumbar spine. Thus it is important to preserve the natural anatomy as much as possible.
Multi-level laminectomy of the cervical spine can lead to instability which can progress to POST-LAMINECTOMY SYNDROME and even to neurological dysfunction from progressive malalignment and curvature (kyphosis) of the cervical spine. The alternative to laminectomy for cervical spinal stenosis is laminoplasty. Instead of removing the lamina, only one side of the lamina is disconnected. On the other side, a hinge is created so that the lamina can be opened like a door on a hinge. Then a plate is placed on the opened side to keep the door open. This procedure is able to create more room for the spinal cord while preserving the lamina and spinous process for muscles to attach. Over the last several years, Dr. Hua has avoided cervical laminectomy surgery in favor of laminoplasty.
Cervical Stenosis and Laminoplasty Video