Intradiscal procedures are solely applied to treat disc protrusions. This is for the reason that this method is not safe enough in classic cases of herniated discs as the fibrous ring of the intervertebral disc is damaged.
This procedure takes place under X-ray control. A laser probe is inserted via a channel through the skin into the disc nucleus. Then, a contrast medium is injected (see picture) in order to secure that the fibrous ring stays intact. If that is not the case, there is the risk that neighbouring nerve tissue may be damaged by the laser probe.
Through the heat of the laser, the protein fibrous structure of the disc nucleus is destroyed. Thus, there is more room available and the pressure of the damaged and protruding disc onto the nerve root is reduced.
The applied techniques and laser probes are varied. Their effectiveness is contradictorily discussed in scientific literature.