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What is Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?

In the past, spinal surgery was traditionally open. Your surgeon needed a long incision to pull back skin and muscle to reveal the area upon which they worked. While this gave clear access to the surgical field, it meant long recovery times due to the stress on the muscle tissue surrounding the spine. 

Minimally invasive spine surgery is based on the concept that fast recovery is better for the patient, both for impact on their daily lives and the effects of the surgery. Instead of long incisions, tiny keyhole openings provide surgical access. 

Dr. Adam Lewis and the team at Jackson Neurosurgery Clinic believe in the benefits of minimally invasive surgery for your comfort and recovery. When you’re planning for spine surgery, visit the experts at our practice to learn more about your procedure. 

Reasons for back surgery

Most people who suffer from back pain won’t require surgery, but there are some cases where no other treatment works. When conservative treatments are exhausted and your back problem persists, then a surgical solution may be considered. If your pain results from certain conditions, a proven track record of surgery can be beneficial. These conditions include: 

  • Vertebrae fractures
  • Herniated discs (ruptured discs)
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Scoliosis and other spinal deformities
  • Spondylolysis
  • Tumors and infections of the spine

In many cases, minimally invasive surgical techniques can be used, but there are some conditions that still require open surgery. Dr. Lewis can discuss the particulars of your situation with you. 

What is minimally invasive spine surgery? 

The key to minimally invasive spine surgery is a tool called a tubular retractor. Requiring only a small incision, the tubular retractor creates a rigid tunnel that enables the operation to be performed using narrow tools working through the retractor. Real-time X-rays and an operating microscope give Dr. Lewis a view of the instruments as he performs the surgery. 

The benefits of minimally invasive surgery

The purpose of surgery remains the same regardless of the techniques used. Relieving pressure on nerves and stabilizing vertebrae are common goals for both open and minimally invasive approaches. When you can choose minimally invasive surgery, you enjoy benefits such as: 

  • No large scars
  • Reduced blood loss during surgery
  • Less chance of infection
  • Minimal muscle damage in the surrounding area
  • Easy to manage post-operative pain
  • Reduced need for rehabilitative therapy after surgery
  • Smaller incisions that heal faster and require less maintenance

Sometimes, minimally invasive procedures may be done on an outpatient basis, saving you from extended stays in the hospital. You may require only local anesthetics, increasing surgical safety. 

When you have the option, minimally invasive surgery is the best procedure to choose. Learn more in consultation with Dr. Lewis by arranging an appointment at Jackson Neurosurgery Clinic. Schedule your visit by phone or online today.