13 november 2016
Purpose Transforaminal endoscopic discectomy (TED) minimises paraspinal muscle damage. The aim of this trial was to compare clinical outcomes of TED to Microdis-cectomy (Micro).
Methods 143 patients, age 25–70 years and\115 kg, with single level lumbar prolapse and radiculopathy, were recruited and randomised. 70 received TED under conscious sedation and 70 Micro under general anaesthesia.
Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), visual analogue scores(VAS) of back and leg pain, and Short Form Health Survey indices (SF-36) were measured preoperatively and at 3, 12 and 24 months.
Results All outcome measures improved significantly in both groups (p\0.001). Affected side leg pain was lower in the TED group at 2 years (1.9 ± 2.6 vs 3.5 ± 3.1,p = 0.002). Hospital stay was shorter following TED (0.7 ± 0.7 vs 1.4 ± 1.3 days, p\0.001). Two Micro patients and five TED patients required revision giving a relative risk of revision for TED of 2.62 (95% CI 0.49–14.0).
Conclusions Functional improvements were maintained at 2 years in both groups with less ongoing sciatica after TED. A greater revision rate after TED was offset by a more rapid recovery.