Keystone Minimally Invasive Spine Surgeon
If you suffer from a spinal condition best treated via surgery, take heart. Minimally invasive spinal surgery can get you back on your feet again in a relatively short time.
While any type of surgery carries a certain amount of risk, patients undergoing minimally invasive spinal surgery experience far fewer complications than those having traditional, open back procedures done. A Keystone minimally invasive spine surgeon can help restore your normal, pain-free movement. Call today to discuss your options with a skilled surgeon.
Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
Minimally invasive spinal surgery is performed by the surgeon using several small – 1 inch or less – incision sites. These small incisions result in barely noticeable scars.
Traditional, open back surgery requires an incision approximately 6 inches in length, so the scar remains obvious. Minimally invasive surgery involves the use of an endoscope, a thin lit tube with a camera attached. The endoscope and minute surgical tools pass through the incisions, which are held open by a tubular retractor. Any materials removed from the spinal area, such as pieces of herniated disc, also pass through the tube.
Unlike open back surgery, many minimally invasive procedures are done on an outpatient basis. Even if the patient must stay in the hospital, it is usually for just one or two days, compared to five or more days for traditional spinal surgery. The patient receiving minimally invasive surgery experiences less pain and needs less pain medication.
Because the operation is shorter than standard surgery, less anesthesia is needed. There is a lower risk of blood loss and infection, and the recuperation time is significantly lessened.
Conditions Treated with Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
If given the choice, most patients would opt for minimally invasive spinal surgery over traditional surgery. While minimally invasive surgery is not suitable for every type of spinal issue, patients diagnosed with many of the most common spinal problems are likely candidates for minimally invasive spine surgery. These conditions include:
- Herniated disc – pain results from the rupture of the soft, gel-like interior of the disc, putting pressure on or “pinching” a nearby nerve
- Degenerated disc – aging discs break down, and this wear and tear means the disc loses its cushioning ability
- Spinal stenosis – narrowing of the spinal canal, which damages the nerves within and causes severe pain and loss of mobility
- Spinal instability – abnormal movement between vertebrae
There are occasions when a minimally invasive surgery is planned, but when the surgeon begins the operation it becomes apparent that traditional back surgery is necessary. Patients are made aware of this possibility and should always keep it in mind.
How a Keystone Minimally Invasive Spine Surgeon Can Help
The surgeon conducts extensive testing prior to surgery, including blood tests, X-rays, CT scans and MRIs. If the patient appears a good candidate for minimally invasive spinal surgery, the doctor explains the procedure in detail.
The patient should take notes and ask questions regarding the surgery itself, post-surgical restrictions and when they might return to normal activities such as driving or work.
Post-surgery, each patient receives an individualized treatment plan, which includes physical therapy and exercises to do at home.
Contact Spine Surgeons Today
If you have been diagnosed with a spinal issue and would like to know if you are a candidate for minimally invasive spinal surgery, contact a Keystone minimally invasive spine surgeon today and make an appointment.