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This report describes a new approach method for mini-hemilaminectomy for the management of thoracolumbar intervertebral disc disease. This approach reaches the vertebra via blunt dissection of the m. longissimus thoracis et lumborum on the accessory process and, therefore, constitutes a lateral muscle-separating approach (LMSA).
Seventy miniature dachshunds with thoracolumbar intervertebral disc disease were randomly assigned to one of two groups (35 dogs each): mini-hemilaminectomy with LMSA was performed in group A, and hemilaminectomy with a dorsolateral approach was performed in group B. The recovery time (number of days between surgery and recovery) and rate was similar when comparing group A and group B (each grade). The mean length of the skin incision was 2.7 cm in group A and 4.0 cm in group B.
These data show that mini-hemilaminectomy with LMSA allows a small incision, a satisfactory surgical field, a stable surgical outcome and minimal bone removal. LMSA requires a smaller detachment area of muscle from the vertebra and, therefore, maximises the amount of muscle and tendons attaching the articular process, which further enhances vertebral stability. We conclude that mini-hemilaminectomy with LMSA is a good option for the management of thoracolumbar intervertebral disc disease.
Many different surgical methods have been used for the management of thoracolumbar intervertebral disc disease (TIVDH) (Flo and Brinker 1975, Jeffery 1988, Lubbe and others 1994, McCartney 1997, Scott and Makee 1999, Moissonnier and others 2004). Hemilaminectomy allows access to disc material with less manipulation than dorsal laminectomy (Redding 1951, Gage and others 1968, Muir and others 1995, McKee 1992).
Mini-hemilaminectomy is a surgical technique that is less invasive than hemilaminectomy (Lubbe and others 1994, Wheeler and …