As a person ages, the joints and discs of the spine degenerate. As part of the degeneration process, the joints and ligaments of the spine can enlarge and thicken. This sometimes leads to compression of the spinal nerves. Surgery may be required to relieve the nerve compression when it causes nerve dysfunction (such as pain, weakness, numbness and difficulty with prolonged standing or walking).
In Minimally Invasive Laminotomy or Laminectomy, the surgeon uses one or more small incisions and special retractors to visualise the compression area under the operating microscope. He then removes the abnormal structures compressing on the spinal nerves. Patients are usually able to go home within 1-2 days after the surgery.