Minimally invasive surgery was introduced to the medical world in the 1980s as a safer alternative to traditional open surgeries. Since then, many doctors have come to prefer minimally invasive techniques as a safe and effective way to meet patients’ surgical needs with fewer health risks.
Minimally invasive procedures have spread widely into many areas of practice, including orthopedics. Keep reading to learn when these methods are used to treat orthopedic injuries and 5 benefits of a minimally invasive approach.
What Is a Minimally Invasive Procedure?
Minimally invasive surgery allows surgeons to use modern technology and advanced surgical techniques to operate on the human body in a less harmful way. This type of surgery limits the number and size of incisions made, which reduces the risk of complications and damage to surrounding muscle and tissue.
In open surgeries, doctors must make large cuts to visualize the area of the body they’re operating on. In minimally invasive surgeries, doctors make small cuts to insert cameras. Then tubes and other surgical tools they can use to visualize the area they need.
On the whole, the procedures are considered to be safer than traditional open surgeries, and they require less hospital time and less recovery time.
Types of Minimally Invasive Surgery for Orthopedic Conditions
Today, there are several types of minimally invasive surgery options for orthopedic injuries. Here are some of the most common.
- Arthroscopy. Arthroscopy is used to identify and treat tears, lesions, inflamed tissue, bone spurs and other damage inside joints. The procedure is commonly on the shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee, ankle, foot and spine.
- Minimally invasive spine surgery (MISS). MISS is used to treat spinal conditions like herniated discs, nerve compression, scoliosis, spinal stenosis and degenerative disc disease. Several surgical techniques may be used to stabilize the spine and remove damaged tissue, bone spurs or spinal discs that are compressing the spinal cord and causing pain.
- Total joint replacement. Joint replacement has traditionally been an open surgery, but surgical practices have advanced to the point where total knee, hip and shoulder replacements can now be performed through minimally invasive procedures.
5 Advantages of Minimally Invasive Surgeries
1.) Smaller incisions. Surgeons don’t need to make a large incision to perform minimally invasive procedures. Instead, they only need to make a small incision just big enough to insert cameras, tubes and other small surgical tools. Additionally, fiber-optic cameras allow surgeons to get the same clear visualization of internal organs as large incisions do for open surgeries.
2.) Fewer complications. A small incision reduces the amount of bleeding and swelling during surgery. Additionally, because surgeons won’t need to cut through muscle to make a large incision. Which means it cause less damage and trauma to surrounding organs, muscle, nerves, tendons and soft tissues.
3.) Decreased risk of infection. Smaller open wounds decrease the risk of bacteria and viruses entering the body and causing infection.
4.) A shorter hospital stay. Some minimally invasive surgeries don’t require a hospital visit at all, which vastly reduces overhead costs. If procedures are performed in a hospital, the length of the stay is shorter than for patients who undergo open surgeries and therefore more cost-efficient. Many patients won’t even require an overnight stay.
5.) Less recovery and downtime. Many patients who undergo minimally invasive procedures have a shorter recovery period with fewer activity restrictions. And they experience less postoperative pain and swelling, and are able to return to normal activities within a few days. Because there’s less pain, many patients don’t require narcotic medications after surgery. Which is an added benefit because narcotics can be dangerous and highly addictive.
Smaller incisions require fewer stitches and produce less scarring after healing.
Integrity Spine and Orthopedics Treats Spine and Joint Conditions
At Integrity Spine and Orthopedics, our board-certified team of doctors specializes in performing minimally invasive spinal procedures, including spine decompression and spine stabilization. Injuries like herniated discs and compressed nerves sometimes require surgery to treat.
Along with spinal injuries, our team provides orthopedic care and pain management services to treat a wide range of musculoskeletal issues, including car crash injuries. We provide caring, compassionate and comprehensive treatment to get you back on your feet and back to doing the things you love as quickly as possible.
If you’re ready to live pain-free, then call us at 904-456-0017 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. We also offer free MRI reviews for patients who need a second opinion on a diagnosis. Contact our office for more information.
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