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    • 21 AUG 18
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    Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

    For decades, the only way to access the necessary areas for spinal surgery was through open surgery. During open spine surgery, a five- to six-inch incision is made along the back, after which muscles are moved in order for the surgeon to reach the target area and remove damaged bones or discs or perform other procedures.

    While open spine surgery is still a useful and necessary technique to treat some conditions, similar to surgery as a whole, more spine surgeries are becoming minimally invasive. In minimally invasive spine surgery, surgeons make only small incisions through which they utilize specialized instruments to access the spine. Small tools and a specially operating microscope (called an endoscope) are then employed to work on the target areas of the spine. During minimally invasive spine surgery, muscles, tendons and connective soft tissue are greatly spared the risk of disruption or damage.

    The names associated with these two different procedures should be a giveaway as to the difference in methods: open surgery requires what is termed “muscle stripping,” while minimally invasive spine surgery employs “muscle sparing.”

    Benefits of minimally invasive spine surgery

    In addition to reduced disruption to the area, minimally invasive spine surgery allows the surgeon to see only the location where the spine problem exists. With continually advancing technology, innovative techniques and experience, this surgery continues to become increasingly accessible and attractive to patients.

    Advantages of minimally invasive spine surgery include:

    • Less invasive technique
    • More rapid recovery
    • Outpatient (same day) surgery and/or shorter hospital stay
    • Less pain
    • Less post-surgical soreness
    • Smaller incisions
    • Less bleeding
    • Less narcotic use

    Conditions Treated by minimally invasive spine surgery

    Because of the progress of surgical innovations and advanced technology, minimally invasive spine surgery is used to treat many conditions. These commonly include:

    • Degenerative disc disease
    • Lumbar and cervical disc herniation
    • Scoliosis or spinal deformities
    • Spinal fractures
    • Spinal instability
    • Spinal stenosis
    • Spinal tumors
    • Spondylolisthesis

    Minimally invasive spine surgery candidates

    Like most procedures, one size does not fit all. Each person’s spine develops differently, having experienced different stresses and conditions. Minimally invasive spine surgery is indicated for certain patients based on their surgeon’s recommendation. Spine surgery is also reserved as a last option, after all other conservative treatment options have been exhausted. Minimally invasive spine surgery is also requires a skilled surgeon. For these reasons, it is important to work with an experienced and board certified surgeon.

    Out-Patient Spine Surgery

    For select patients, our highly skilled surgeons are now able to perform minimally invasive spine procedures on an outpatient basis. This means the procedure can be done in our state-of-the-art surgery center and the patient can go home the same day to recover with no overnight stay at a hospital or inpatient rehabilitation facility.

    Surgery with UOA

    With our wide experience in various cutting-edge techniques in minimally invasive spine surgery, we customize our treatment to best suit each patient. Our experts can discuss with you the use of robotic-assisted surgery as part of minimally invasive procedures; including use of the Mazor Robotic System, which improves safety with precise positioning of spine instrumentation.

    At University Orthopaedic Associates (UOA), we bring 45 years of experience to the diagnosis and cutting-edge treatment of spine conditions. Our record of successful spine surgeries speaks for itself. Contact us for a consultation.

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