Ozone chemonucleolysis in non-contained lumbar disc herniations: a pilot study with 12 months follow-up

Acta Neurochir Suppl. 2005:92:93-7. doi: 10.1007/3-211-27458-8_20.


Study design: Prospective case series with six and twelve months follow up.

Objective: To observe clinical and morphological results of the intradiscal ozone chemionucleolysis in patients affected by non-contained lumbar disc herniations.

Methods: 30 patients were included in the study on the base of precise inclusion and exclusion criteria. The patients were followed on 6 and 12 months period by Visual Analogic Scale (VAS), Roland Morris Disability Questionnaire (RMDQ) and Overall Patient Rating Scale (OPRS). Disc herniation volume morphology was evaluated at 5 months by control MRI scanning.

Results: Twenty-seven patients (90%) showed a statistically significant improvement in pain (P < 0.001, Wilcoxon test) and function (P < 0.001, Wilcoxon test), on VAS and RMDQ evaluation, respectively. The mean satisfaction with the treatment on OPSR was 79.3%, with 24 patients referring satisfaction equal or greater than 80%. There were no major complications related to the procedure.

Conclusions: The results of this study indicate the ozone chemonucleolysis as a possibly effective modality of treatment in patients affected by signs and symptoms of non-contained lumbar disc herniations that have overpassed conservative measures and have not yet fulfilled the indications for open surgical treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Back Pain / diagnosis*
  • Back Pain / etiology
  • Back Pain / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Intervertebral Disc Chemolysis / methods*
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / complications
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / diagnosis*
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / drug therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Ozone / administration & dosage*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Pilot Projects
  • Radiculopathy / diagnosis
  • Radiculopathy / etiology
  • Radiculopathy / prevention & control*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Ozone