Type of Surgery

Information

Doctor Certified

Last updated: 11/24/2009

Diagnosis/Preparation

Rhizotomy is performed on patients with spasticity that is insufficiently responsive to oral medications or injectable therapies (botulinum toxin, phenol, or alcohol). It is most commonly performed for those patients with lower extremity spasticity...

that interferes with walking or severe spasticity that prevents hygiene or positioning of the legs. It is most commonly performed on children with cerebral palsy.

Patients undergoing rhizotomy receive a large battery of tests before the procedure, in order to document the functional effects of spasticity, and the patient's medical health and likely response to anesthesia and other operative stresses. Rhizotomy is performed as an in-patient procedure, and the patient is likely to require an overnight hospital stay before the operation.



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Other Information

A rhizotomy (ɹaɪˈzɑtəmi) is a neurosurgical procedure that selectively severs problematic nerve roots in the spinal cord, most often to relieve the symptoms of neuromuscular conditions such as spastic diplegia and other forms of spastic cerebral palsy. In extreme cases, a rhizotomy may also be considered for a person suffering from severe back pain or a pinched nerve.

The sensory nerve roots are first separated from the motor ones. Identification of the nerve fibers to be cut is then made by means of electrical stimulation. The one(s) producing the pain or other problems are identified in this way, then selectively cut.


From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhizotomy

Other Information

Select comparative data from 1999 to 2006 include a decrease of 14 percent in the number of neurosurgeons in private practice and a decrease of 13 percent in the number of neurosurgeons in solo practice.


From: AANS

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