Nov 3, 2021 | Treatments

Minimally Invasive vs. Open Spine Surgery

spine surgery types

Lower back pain is one of the leading issues affecting adults. For some, this pain is simply uncomfortable and comes and goes, while for others, this pain is debilitating. It often stops people from being able to live their lives, because it affects so many aspects of it. This is why it’s no surprise that those suffering from pain are searching for information about spine surgery types, and what they can do to get pain relief.

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about both minimally invasive and open surgery and which is more beneficial for lower back pain patients.

Open Spine Procedures

Traditional spine surgery, or open spine surgery, is a type of surgery in which a surgeon makes a large opening in the back or abdomen to access the spine. The incision will usually be made in the patient’s back, some procedures require the surgeon to access the spine through an abdominal incision.

But exactly how large is a “large” incision? In open surgery, incisions are typically about six inches long. This incision is usually made in the patient’s back and is used to dissect the spinal muscles and pull them away from the bone. This is known as retraction. Once the surgeon can see the bones of the spine, the procedure can begin. 

Unfortunately, because open surgery requires a larger incision, the patient’s exposure increases, along with potential risks and complications. Open surgery involves more disruption of soft muscle tissue surrounding the spine and increased risks of infection, bleeding, and pain following the procedure. In addition to this, open surgery requires general anesthesia, which can lead to complications. Because of the nature of this type of procedure, open surgery also has a very long recovery time.

Now our discussion of spine surgery types will move on to minimally invasive spine surgery. This is a form of spine surgery that has grown in popularity in recent years. Keep reading to find out why.

Minimally Invasive Procedures

Minimally invasive spine surgery’s (MISS) increase in popularity is likely due to the fact that it allows surgeons to successfully treat patients with significantly less damage to the body. This means less pain, shorter hospital stays, and fewer risks of complications for patients. 

A variety of techniques can be used in minimally invasive spine surgery, but all techniques have the following benefits:

  • Smaller incisions, sometimes even just millimeters in size.
  • Less blood loss during surgery.
  • Less muscle damage, because minimally invasive techniques require less cutting, or in some cases, no cutting of the muscle.
  • Many MISS procedures are outpatient, using only local anesthesia and reducing patients’ risk of complications.
  • Reduced risk of infection and pain after surgery
  • Faster recovery from surgery.
  • Reduced reliance on pain medication following surgery.

Developed in the 1980s, MISS is a safe and effective way to meet patients’ surgical needs. In spine surgery, minimally invasive techniques are usually performed with the goal of stabilizing the vertebral bones and spinal joints or relieving the pressure placed on spinal nerves.

However, although minimally invasive spine surgery is preferred by most surgeons to open surgery, it still requires moving muscle tissue out of the way to reach the spine. This is because the spine is located deep within the body and can’t be accessed any other way. 

Some of the most common conditions treated using MISS include:

These conditions are treated using minimally invasive procedures such as the following:

Spine Surgery Types: Learn More About Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery at South Florida’s Premier Spine Clinic

There’s no shortage of spine surgery types, but minimally invasive spine surgery provides the best outcomes for patients with easier overall recovery. We’ll help you determine which minimally invasive procedure will most effectively treat your unique condition.

Dr. Biscup is a pioneer in minimally invasive lumbar spine surgery. His specialization includes laser microsurgery and micro-decompression laminoplasty. In addition to this, he often provides a second opinion for patients considering surgery and sees many patients who have failed to get relief from prior spine surgery.

If you’re currently living with lower back pain and are failing to get relief from your current treatment or have all but given up on finding relief, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-533-7313 or contact us online today. Our goal is to deliver the best outcome possible for the relief of your back pain and we pride ourselves on our proven ability to do so. We look forward to partnering with you on your successful journey to better health!

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