Getting spinal surgery for degenerative disc disease can be scary. That is why your doctor recommends non-surgical options as a first-line treatment for your spine conditions. However, when non-surgical treatment options do not work, living with pain and discomfort can be impossible, and undergoing surgery may be the only treatment option left.
Fortunately, minimally invasive surgeries have helped eliminate the fear of muscle damage and pain we used to experience with traditional surgery.
This article will discuss how minimally invasive surgeries are different from traditional open surgeries, what are common minimally invasive surgeries for degenerative disc disease, and what happens during minimally invasive surgery.
What Is Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?
Minimally invasive surgery for degenerative disc disease is an advanced method of performing spine surgery. In the traditional approach to surgery, the surgeon makes a long incision that helps them see the surgical site clearly. After traditional open surgery, you will experience more muscle damage and pain.
In contrast, your surgeon makes small incisions about ½ inch long through your skin during minimally invasive surgery. Your surgeon will place an endoscope or small metal tube in the incision that helps them work through a smaller incision. Minimally invasive surgeries cause less damage to your muscles and soft tissues compared to a long incision required in open surgery.
What Are Common Minimally Invasive Surgeries for Degenerative Disc Disease?
The two most common types of surgeries for degenerative disc disease that can be performed using a minimally invasive approach include:
A minimally invasive discectomy is an advanced type of surgery in which a damaged or degenerative disc is removed to help relieve pressure on the spinal cord. A small tube is placed through the skin between vertebrae to access the degenerative disc in this surgery. With the help of this tube, your surgeon will use small surgical instruments to remove the problem-causing part of the disc.
During spinal fusion surgery, two or more bones of your spine are fused together. Compared to traditional spinal fusion, minimally invasive spinal surgery requires smaller incisions. Spinal fusion surgery eliminates motion between two vertebrae, thus reducing pain.
What Will Happen During A Minimally Invasive Surgery for Degenerative Disc Disease?
You will be given either general or regional anesthesia during your minimally invasive surgery. Your surgeon will make one or more small incisions with the help of a fluoroscope or endoscope. A small surgical instrument will be passed through the endoscope or through the half-inch incision. Through this instrument, a tubular retractor will be placed. From opening in your skin in the targeted area, these retractors create a tunnel of workspace. Your surgeon will insert instruments and withdraw the removed bone and tissue. The retractors also help hold muscles away from the surgery site, and when these retractors are removed, muscles return to their original position. After surgery, your surgeon will close the incision with sutures, glue, or staples and cover it with a bandage or surgical tape.
Minimally Invasive Surgery for Degenerative Disc Disease Surgery in Colorado
Minimally invasive surgery comes with many benefits, but not everyone can be a candidate for it. If you want to check whether you are a good candidate for minimally invasive surgery for degenerative disc disease, visit Front Range Spine and Neurosurgery. Our board-certified neurosurgeons can assess your spinal condition and devise the most suitable treatment plan for you.
If you are interested in learning more about the minimally invasive procedures for disc degeneration disease performed at Front Range Spine and Neurosurgery, or if you would like to schedule an appointment with our board-certified neurosurgeons, give us a call at (303) 790-1800 or use our online form to request one today.
We will help you live a healthy and pain-free life!