Procedures and Treatments

Harbin Clinic Neurosurgeons are highly skilled experts in performing the following surgeries, including the use of minimally invasive procedures.


Chiari Decompression

A specific type of craniotomy designed to make more room for the herniated cerebellum, and to relieve pressure on the brain. It also may permit restoration of the normal flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) around the brain, and sometimes results in an improvement in any associated hydrocephalus.


A surgical operation in which a bone flap is temporarily removed from the skull to access the brain.


A surgical repair of a defect or deformity of a skull.

Decompressive Hemicraniectomy

A neurosurgical procedure in which part of the skull is removed to allow a swelling brain room to expand without being squeezed. It is performed on victims of traumatic brain injury and stroke.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) 

A special type of radiation that allows precisely focused, high-dose x-ray beams to be delivered to a small, localized area of the brain. Because SRS focuses the beams more closely to the tumor than conventional radiation, it can deliver a higher, more effective dose of treatment to the tumor site.

Subdural drainage

A type of craniotomy to remove blood products caused by a subdural hematoma.

Third Ventriculostomy

A surgical procedure in which an opening is created in the floor of the third ventricle using an endoscope placed within the ventricular system through a burr hole. This allows the cerebrospinal fluid to flow directly to the basal cisterns, thereby shortcutting any obstruction. It is used as an alternative to a cerebral shunt to treat certain forms of obstructive hydrocephalus, such as aqueductal stenosis.

Ventricular Drainage

A process of withdrawing cerebrospinal (CSF) fluid from the brain in order to relieve pressure inside the skull.  A thin plastic tube, called a catheter, is placed into ventricles in the brain that contain the fluid. The catheter is attached to a drainage bag outside the body where the fluid is collected.

Spine (Cervical, Thoracic and Lumbar)

Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF)

A surgical procedure to treat nerve root or spinal cord compression by decompressing the spinal cord and nerve roots of the cervical spine and stabilizing the corresponding vertebrae. Typically a small plate (with screws) and cage are used to achieve fixation. This procedure is used when other non-surgical treatments have failed.

Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF)

A Interbody fusion involving removal of the intervertebral disk. When the disk space has been cleared out, a metal, plastic or bone spacer is implanted between the two adjoining vertebrae.

Artificial Disc Replacement (ADR), or Total Disc Replacement (TDR)

A surgical procedure in which degenerated intervertebral discs in the spinal column are replaced with artificial devices in the lumbar (lower) or cervical (upper) spine. The procedure is used to treat chronic, severe low back pain and cervical pain resulting from degenerative disc disease.

Cervical Disc Replacement Surgery

A surgery involving removal of a diseased cervical disk and replacing it with an artificial disk. It is done when the space between your vertebrae has become too narrow and part of your vertebrae or your cervical disk is pressing on your spinal cord or spinal nerves, causing you pain, numbness, or weakness.


A surgical removal of the damaged portion of a herniated disk in the spine. A herniated disk can irritate or compress nearby nerves and cause pain, numbness or weakness — which may radiate down your arms or legs.

Direct Lumbar Interbody Fusion (DLIF)

Direct lateral interbody fusion are approaches to spinal fusion in which the surgeon accesses the intervertebral disc space and fuses the lumbar spine (low back) from the side (lateral) rather than from the front (anterior) or the back (posterior). In some cases, these can be less invasive approaches.


A spinal procedure in which a balloon is deployed in a fractured bone in order to compress and restore the bone. Bone cement is then injected through a small hole into the fractured vertebra with the goal of relieving back pain caused by vertebral compression fractures

Lumbar Laminectomy

This procedure is designed to remove a small portion of the bone over the nerve root and/or disc material from under the nerve root to give the nerve root more space, relieve pressure and provide a better healing environment.


This minimally invasive surgical procedure in which a portion of a herniated nucleus pulpolsus, the jelly like substance in the middleof the spinal disc, is removed by way of a surgical instrument or laser while using an operating microscope for magnification.


A general term for surgery requiring an operating microscope.

Microvascular Decompressions

A type of craniotomy used to treat vascular compression of cranial nerves. The most common syndrome is trigeminal neuralgia, a pain syndrome characterized by severe episodes of intense facial pain.

Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

With this procedure spine surgeons are able to perform spine surgery using minimally invasive techniques through a 1 or 2 inch incision.  Because these incisions are small, patients tend to have a quicker recovery time and less discomfort than with conventional surgery – all with the same benefits.

Oblique Lateral Interbody Fusion (OLIF)

This procedure technique requires a small 1″ incision along the side of the abdomen allowing a bloodless approach to all levels of the lumbar spine except the lowest level L5-S1.  Through this single incision it is often possible to correct complex multilevel deformity such as scoliosis.

Posterior Cervical Laminectomy

This is an open removal of the cervical lamina typically used when the spinal cord has severe diffuse compression.

Scoliosis Surgery

A more complicated spinal surgery where multiple levels of the spine have deformity and compression resulting in global balance problems, severe back pain, and/or leg pain.

Spinal Decompressions

This procedure relieves pressure on one, or many, pinched nerves of the spinal column. Spinal decompression can be achieved both surgically and non-surgically and is used to treat conditions that result in chronic back pain such as disc bulge, disc herniation, sciatica, spinal stenosis, and isthmic and degenerative spondylolisthesis.

Spinal Fusion and Instrumentation

This surgical procedure to implant titanium, titanium-alloy, stainless steel or non-metallic devices into the spine. Instrumentation provides a permanent solution to spinal instability. Medical implants are specially designed and come in many shapes and sizes. Typically these include rods, hooks, braided cable, plates, screws and interbody cages. Cages are simply structures that support bones (either between bones or in place of them) while new bone growth occurs through and around them.

Spinal Tumor Surgery

The primary goal is to reduce pain caused by the spinal tumor, restore or preserve neurologic function, and provide spinal stability. The spinal tumor may be approached surgically from the front or back of the body.  Surgery may include tumor resection (partial removal) or excision (complete removal).

Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion (TLIF)

This form of spine surgery in which the lumbar spine is approached through an incision in the back. Recommended as a surgical treatment option for patients with a condition causing spinal instability in their lower back, such as degenerative disc disease, spondylolisthesis or spinal stenosis.

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