Orthopaedic Spine Center
450 Broadway St. | MC6342
Redwood City, CA 94063
For Adult Patients: (650) 725-5905

Patient Case Study #2: Laminaplasty


67 year-old right-hand dominant woman who fell 3 months prior, presents with increasing difficulty with manipulating small objects such as buttoning her buttons and picking up coins, and problems with her balance requiring the use of a front-wheeled walker.


She had significant difficulty with fine motor movements in her hands, had increased reflexes in her arms, and was unable to walk heel-to-toe.


Before treatment x-ray shows significant arthritis in the neck, particularly at C5-C6, C6-C7. MRI shows significant narrowing around her spinal cord at multiple levels from C4-T1.

Above: Pre-operative x-ray and MRIs.


Narrowing of the spinal canal from C4-T1 causing dysfunction of the spinal cord (myelopathy).

Selected Treatment

C4-T1 laminaplasties involving cutting the bone in the back of the neck and hinging it open like a trap-door creating more space for the spinal cord and placement of small plates to hold the bone open as it heals.

Above: Post-operative x-ray.


Patient had steady improvement in the function of her hands and her ambulation to the point that she now walks without any assistance.