My 16-year-old daughter hurt her back when she fell off her horse. This happened over a year ago. She has been treated with medications, exercise, and a brace, but she still has back pain that shoots down her left leg. Are there any other treatment options?

Your doctor may recommend an operation to remove the disc--the spongy cushion that sits between each bone of the back. This step is called a discectomy. ("Ectomy" means to remove.) If there is still too much pressure on the nerves within the spinal canal, the doctor may remove a section of the bone that covers the back part of the spinal column over the injured disc (the "lamina"). This part of the operation is called a laminectomy.