In recent years, surgical techniques have seen major advancements in every surgical specialty, including spine surgery. Minimally invasive spine surgery options are made possible with the use of lasers, endoscopy and image guidance systems. Many orthopedic procedures that were traditionally performed as “open surgery,” with larger incisions and open exposure of the spine, can now be performed in a minimally invasive way.
What’s the Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Procedure?
During open surgery, the muscle surrounding the spine is retracted to provide the surgeon a clear view of the area. This retraction can damage both muscle and surrounding soft tissue. During a minimally invasive spinal procedure, however, Dr. Kushwaha, orthopedic surgeon in Houston, utilizes fluoroscopy to display real-time X-ray images of the patient’s spine on a screen during surgery. An operating microscope is also used to magnify the view through the tubular retractor.
Patients in Houston overwhelmingly prefer minimally invasive surgery, as these techniques help shorten recovery times and are more cosmetically pleasing due to the smaller incisions involved. Typically speaking, minimally invasive surgical procedures carry fewer risks to the patient. Because minimally invasive procedures do not involve large incisions, they help avoid muscle damage, resulting in less pain after surgery (although some discomfort should be expected).
Some of the other benefits of minimally invasive spine surgery include:
- Short skin incisions
- Minimal tissue dissection
- Decreased blood loss
- Short operative times
- Fewer complications
- Lower risk of infections
- Shortened hospital stay
- Accelerated rehabilitation
As with traditional spinal surgery, minimally invasive procedures are generally only considered after nonsurgical treatments, such as medication or therapy, have failed to yield results for the patient. Your orthopedic surgeon in Houston recommends a minimally invasive spine surgery for common procedures such as lumbar decompression and spinal fusion.
If you are suffering from back pain, contact Dr. Kushwaha, a trusted orthopedic surgeon in Houston, for an appointment.