The use of chymopapain in the treatment of lumbar disc herniation has been widely studied since Smith first described its use in humans in 1963. The authors describe the use of chymopapain intraoperatively in open lumbar microdiscectomy in 63 patients. When combined with the results of a previous study performed at the same institution, the authors found that this technique significantly reduces the rate of recurrent disc herniation when compared with traditional laminotomy with discectomy. This procedure maximizes the benefits of each approach taken separately, allowing for decompression of the nerve root from a free fragment or sequestered disc and preventing recurrence through dissolution of the nucleus pulposus. Overall, outcome was good or excellent immediately postoperatively in 73% of the 63 patients and in 64% at last follow-up evaluation. Additionally, this procedure is safe with no complications noted in the immediate perioperative period or at follow-up evaluation.