Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery (MIS) in Northern New Jersey
sing advanced medical technology and techniques, the neurosurgeons and orthopedic spine surgeons at Centers for Neurosurgery, Spine & Orthopedics offer minimally invasive spine surgery (MIS) both with and without the use of intraoperative imaging and robotics. CNSO surgeons frequently perform complex spine surgery at the top hospitals. Serving patients across Northern New Jersey, this team of board-certified neurosurgeons and orthopedic spine surgeons takes a compassionate, patient-centered approach. Learn more about minimally invasive surgery and the benefits of experiencing treatment from a comprehensive spine care facility.
Overview of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
Minimally invasive spine surgery can be a safe and effective treatment option for patients with specific back-related injuries and conditions. When medication, physical therapy, and other non-surgical treatments haven’t improved the patient’s condition or symptoms worsen, surgery may be recommended. Patients who may benefit from minimally invasive spine surgery include those with:
- Herniated discs: This is a condition in which a cartilaginous disc within a joint between the spinal bones is damaged. Parts of the disc may shift and press on adjacent nerves and the spinal cord leading to back or neck pain.
- Spinal stenosis: This is a condition in which a portion of the spinal canal becomes narrower (usually as a result of injury or arthritis), causing pain and pressure on the spinal cord.
- Degenerative disc disease: The most common form of back arthritis, degenerative disc disease occurs when spinal joints shrink or lose their elasticity, causing spinal cord compression, or a pinched nerve which leads to pain and irritation.
- Bone spurs: These are painful overgrowths of bone that form as a result of wear and tear to the cartilage around a joint.
- Radiculopathy: This is a condition caused by a pinched spinal nerve, that leads to numbness, tingling, pain or weakness in extremities.
- Sciatica: A radiating pain along the back of the legs because of a pinched sciatic nerve. It may be caused by conditions such as spinal stenosis or a slipped disc.
- Scoliosis: This is an abnormal S-shaped curvature of the spine, typically in the middle or lower back. It can also be the root cause of leg, hip, or back pain.
- Spondylolisthesis: This is a condition caused by weakened joints and ligaments which can lead to the slippage and abnormal alignment of the affected spinal vertebrae.
- Sacroiliitis: This is a condition caused by inflammation of one or both of the immovable joints formed by the bones of the pelvis, called the sacrum and the ilium.
Degenerative disc disease can occur anywhere along the spinal column. Herniated discs most frequently occur in the lumbar back, then the neck, and lastly, the thoracic area.
The medical team at Centers for Neurosurgery, Spine & Orthopedics will evaluate each patient to determine whether the patient could benefit from conservative treatment options or minimally invasive spine surgery so the patient can experience a rapid recovery.
How Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Works
The doctors at CNSO never rush to recommend surgery unless it is the best treatment option. Before deciding whether surgery would resolve the patient’s discomfort, imaging tests, such as a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, within the past six months would be necessary to obtain an accurate picture of the spinal pathology and affected joints. The CNSO surgeon would then take ample time to discuss a proposed treatment plan with the patient, share possible outcomes, and address any concerns they may have regardless of whether or not surgery is necessary.
A patient will be under general anesthesia during their surgery. During the surgery, the smallest possible incision (1-3 cm) is made to ensure the positioning of the surgical instrument and secure the approach to the affected area. Tubular retractors are placed to hold the surrounding tissues and muscles in place. A microscope is often used to enhance visualization, so the surgeon can effectively treat the problem with a high level of precision. Because of the small size of the incision(s), minimal bandaging is required over the operation site. Most of the time just a bandaid is necessary. This provides a patient with additional comfort during the post-operative period.
Benefits of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
This type of surgery is faster, safer, and will cause minimal disturbance to nearby muscles and tissues. Because some spinal surgeries only require local anesthesia, patients are also at less risk of a reaction to general anesthetics. Other benefits of minimally invasive spine surgery include:
- Less scarring of skin and muscle due to the small incision
- Less bleeding during surgery
- Less exposure to radiation
- Lowered risk of infection
- Lower pain medication requirements during recovery
- Shorter recovery time
In most cases, patients can go home the same day of surgery. Patients will need a friend or family member to drive them home after their procedure. Once home, it’s recommended that patients avoid strenuous activities but stay active. Walking and doing their regular daily tasks are all possible. Some patients experience mild pain and soreness in the area, which should improve in a relatively short amount of time. Unlike open back surgery, pain killers are either not necessary or prescribed for a short period of time. In general, the doctor may prescribe muscle relaxing medication and recommend an over-the-counter pain reliever for discomfort.
The medical team will also provide instructions for post-surgery recovery, such as avoiding strenuous exercise or lifting heavy items for a certain amount of time. In most cases, patients may benefit from structured physical therapy, which the surgeon will prescribe once ready. Physical therapy will help strengthen affected muscles and ligaments after surgery and increase the rate of recovery.
Receive Collaborative Medical Care at Centers for Neurosurgery, Spine & Orthopedics
At Centers for Neurosurgery, Spine & Orthopedics, the highly trained neurosurgeons, spine surgeons, physiatrists, pain management physicians, and physical therapists work as a team. Patients benefit from access to medical professionals with extensive expertise in treating a wide variety of conditions. These multi-specialty physicians are experts in every type of spinal surgery, as well as non-invasive pain management methods, and physical therapy. Patients can remain with the medical experts at Centers for Neurosurgery, Spine & Orthopedics from diagnosis through recovery.
Operating only at state-of-the-art NJ facilities, CNSO surgeons can use minimally invasive spine surgery to treat a variety of spinal conditions after conservative treatment has not proven beneficial. MIS surgery will help patients regain their quality of life. With multiple office locations throughout NJ, patients can receive surgical treatment at a facility that’s convenient for them. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Centers for Neurosurgery, Spine & Orthopedics today.