Factors predicting the result of surgery for lumbar intervertebral disc herniation

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 1987 Nov;12(9):933-8. doi: 10.1097/00007632-198711000-00016.


The prospective study was undertaken to find out preoperative or perioperative factors predicting the results of the first surgery for lumbar disc herniation. The results were evaluated 1 and 6 months postoperatively using, in addition to the patient evaluation, indices for pain, activities of daily living (ADL), and working capacity. The best result was achieved if the patient was operated on before 2 months' duration of disabling sciatica. The operative finding graded as protrusion predicted poor result. The social and psychological factors influenced the outcome more than the findings in the preoperative physical examination or the grade of operative finding. It is recommended to add indices for pain and ADL and a psychological test to the preoperative examinations of patients with lumbar disc herniation.

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism
  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / surgery*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Prospective Studies