Approach: An incision is made down the middle of the neck and the muscles and tissues are gently separated and moved to the sides. The rear of the spine is exposed.
Decompression: The lamina of the spine are drilled and removed. If a large area of the spine is compressed, then multiple laminae may be removed. This process allows the spinal cord to float backwards and gives it more room.
Stabilization: Most likely, additional stabilization of the spine will be needed and a fusion will be done. In this process, a bone graft is inserted along with any necessary instrumentation. This holds the vertebrae in place and preserves stability.
After surgery, patients will remain in the hospital for one day. Most patients are able to return to all activities within a week. A postoperative rehabilitation program is usually prescribed to guide return to activities and normal life.