What is Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?
When we say “minimally invasive”, we’re talking about surgical techniques that use small incisions. This is a great option when available because the more traditional “open back” spine surgeries can disrupt and damage muscles, and typically require a longer recovery time.
If you’re concerned that your pain requires surgery then take the first step to find relief, by using our free interactive assessment.
Why is Minimally Invasive Surgery Performed?
Minimally invasive spine surgery is an option for individuals who have exhausted conservative treatments without success, including physical therapy, injections, and medication.
Surgery is typically only considered if your doctor can pinpoint the exact source of your pain, such as a herniated disk or spinal stenosis. Conditions that would require minimally invasive spine surgery are generally the same as those for traditional open surgery, they could include:
- Spinal Stenosis
- Pinched Nerve
- Herniated Disc
- Disc Degeneration
- Bulging Disc
- Spinal deformities such as scoliosis
- Spinal instability
- Fractured vertebra
- Spinal tumors
- Infection in the spine
Minimally invasive spine surgery techniques involve very small incisions, as well as limited blood loss and tissue damage. This means recovery from most minimally invasive surgery is relatively fast. At the offices of Dr. Craig Callewart, our minimally invasive spine surgeries can be completed as an outpatient procedure, which allows many patients to return home the same day.
How is Minimally Invasive Surgery Performed?
With minimally invasive spine surgery, Dr. Callewart uses a process called tubular retraction instead of the traditional pulling and retracting of muscles to reach the affected area of the spine. This is primarily the reason that patients experience a faster recovery than with traditional, invasive surgery.
Patients who undergo minimally invasive spine surgery often benefit from less blood loss during surgery, and less soft tissue damage.
Of course, every person’s condition is unique, but generally, patients who are suffering from chronic moderate to severe pain and are not finding relief from conservative treatments can be considered for minimally invasive spine surgery.
What Should I Expect After Minimally Invasive Surgery?
The aftermath of minimally invasive surgery will differ depending on the condition treated, the exact location of the surgery, and your medical history.
Overall though, the recovery period is much shorter than traditional, more invasive surgeries – and often, patients report full pain relief.
Frequently Asked Questions About Minimally Invasive Surgery
1. What’s the difference between open surgery and minimally invasive surgery?
Ultimately, the difference in the surgical techniques is the size of the incision and the way that doctors remove or move muscles to access the point of pain.
2. Does minimally invasive surgery have risks?
All surgeries have risks, depending on what they are and the location being treated. All risks will be discussed with the patient ahead of surgery.