Minimally Invasive Surgery: What Is It?

Minimally invasive surgery can sound intimidating if you don’t know what it is. In this technique, surgeons are able to operate with the same effectiveness, but less damage to the body than open surgery.

Fewer complications, less recovery time and the ability to get back to life more quickly are appealing aspects of minimally invasive surgery. This is one reason we focused on the technique for our Spine-Talks® Cities tour.

We spoke with some of the nation’s top spine surgeons about minimally invasive surgery, what it means and what they want to convey to patients about it.

>>>>>Surgery Options: To Wait or Not to Wait?

As Dr. Todd J. Albert of the Hospital for Special Surgery said:

Minimally invasive surgery is “trying to attain everything we can attain with classic surgical techniques, but doing it with less destruction of normal tissues and anatomy. And if we can do that — we can often get them back out of the hospital quicker and back to doing the things they love to do.”

One of the first kinds of minimally invasive surgery done in this way was a Laparoscopy, which is done with small incisions using small tubes, tiny cameras and surgical instruments. Another type of minimally invasive surgery is robotic surgery, which we covered in another segment of Spine Talks.

If you’d like to learn more about minimally invasive surgery, we encourage you to visit our full panel of Spine Talks videos here.