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Advantages And Risk Of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery | Daytona Beach Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Advantages And Risk Of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

Technological advances in minimally invasive spine surgery (MIS) have enabled surgeons to expand patient selection and treat an evolving array of spinal disorders.

MIS was developed to treat disorders of the spine with less disruption to the muscles. These disorders include degenerative disc disease, herniated disc, fractures, tumors, infections, instability, and deformity. This can result in quicker recovery, decrease operative blood loss, and speed patient return to normal function.

In some MIS approaches, also called “keyhole surgeries,” surgeons use a tiny endoscope with a camera on the end, which is inserted through a small incision in the skin. The camera provides surgeons with an inside view, enabling surgical access to the affected area of the spine.

One potential downside of traditional, open lumbar (back) surgeries is the damage that occurs from the 5- to 6-inch incision. There are many potential sources for damage to normal tissue: the muscle dissection and retraction required to uncover the spine (which contributes to the formation of scar and fibrotic tissue), the need for blood vessel cauterization, and the necessity of bone removal.

Disrupting natural spinal anatomy is necessary to facilitate decompression of pinched nerves and the placement of screws and devices to stabilize the spine. This may lead to lengthy hospital stays (up to five days or longer), prolonged pain and recovery periods, the need for postoperative narcotic use, significant operative blood loss, and risk of tissue infection.

But not all patients are appropriate candidates for MIS procedures, according to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons. It is important to keep in mind that there needs to be certainty that the same or better results can be achieved through MIS techniques as with the respective open procedure.

As with all non-emergency spinal surgeries, the patient should undergo an appropriate period of conservative treatment, such as physical therapy, pain medication, or bracing, without showing improvement, before surgery is considered. The time period of this varies depending on the specific condition and procedure, but is generally six weeks to six months.

The benefits of surgery should always be weighed carefully against its risks. Although a large percentage of patients report significant symptom and pain relief, there is no guarantee that surgery will help every individual.

Many MIS procedures can be performed on an outpatient basis. In some cases, the surgeon may require a hospital stay, typically less than 24 hours to 2 days, depending on the procedure.

For more on medical safety, see the library of articles by Daytona Beach medical malpractice attorney.



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