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February 3, 1975

Chymopapain Chemonucleolysis in Lumbar Disk Disease

Author Affiliations

From the Orthopaedic Department, Long Beach Memorial Hospital Medical Center, Long Beach, Calif, and the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, College of Medicine, University of California, Irvine (Dr. Wiltse). Dr. Yuan is now with the State University of New York, Upstate Medical Center, Syracuse, NY.

JAMA. 1975;231(5):474-479. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03240170016008

Experience with chymopapain chemonucleolysis in 1,200 cases of lumbar disk disease indicates that it is an effective method of relieving pain resulting from an abnormal intervertebral disk. Complications were few; anaphylaxis occurring immediately after injection was by far the most serious. With the use of a corticosteroid and an antihistamine in preoperative preparation, the incidence of anaphylaxis has dropped, although it still occurs. On long-term follow-up, chemonucleolysis appears to be as good as laminectomy in properly selected cases.

(JAMA 231:474-479, 1975)