2022 AMI Online Salon

Lumbar Discectomy: Before Your Surgery

Project Detail

  • Entrant Name:  Erin Martin
  • Client: Healthwise
  • Copyright: Healthwise, 2022
  • Medium/software used: C4D, aftereffects and premier
  • Final presentation format: Digital
  • Primary Audience: Patient Education

Project Description

Lumbar discectomies are one of the most common minimally-invasive spinal procedures used to repair herniated discs. By viewing this video, patients can better acquaint themselves with the procedure, why and how it’s done and how best to prepare for their procedure. The video explains terms the patient is likely to hear -vertabrae, foramina, microdiscectomy and more- using simple terms and analogies and clear accompanying visuals so that patients can readily understand the problem at hand and how the discectomy aims to remedy the issue. And despite the need to include some complex terms the patient is likely to hear, the piece still comes in at a 7th grade reading level. The video uses clear, simple visuals to draw the viewer’s attention to the area of focus, whether it be an explanation of a pinched nerve or how the disc material is to be removed. We intentionally avoid showing the breaking of the skin barrier, the grinding of bone and other elements that user testing told us would be off-putting to patients and instead opted for cross-fades and depictions that omitted imagery that could scare or intimidate lay viewers. This piece was intended for online viewing at home or in a clinician’s office. Text-on-screen contrast ratios meet WCAG recommendations which helps accommodate users with low vision. This video also aims to be gender and identity-inclusive by using second-person pronouns and intentionally avoiding assigning gender to the audience.