J Korean Orthop Assoc.  1997 Dec;32(7):1766-1772.

A Clinical Study of the Open Discectomy of the Herniated Lumbar Disc: Analysis of Relationship between Operative Indications and MRI Findings


The purpose of this study is to evaluate the correlation between the operative indications and the MRI findings in the herniated lumbar disc. We reviewed the lumbar spine MRI and medical records in the 158 patients of the herniated lumbar disc which were removed by open discectomy. We assessed the herniated lumbar disc in the MRI by the Steinmetz s classification and the operative findings with postoperative results at least 6 months. 170 levels of the operated lumbar discs in these patients consisted of protruded discs in 41 levels, extruded subligamentous discs in 91 levels, extruded transligamentous discs in 27 levels, sequestered discs in 11 levels. We recognized especially in the operated protruded discs that were combined with the lateral recess stenosis in most cases. Postoperatively, 139 patients (88%) had excellent and good results. We concluded that the clinical operative indications were correlated with the cases which were more severe than extruded subligamentous discs or protruded discs combined with lateral recess stenosis in MRI findings.


Lumbar spine; MRI; Open discectomy
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