How Does Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Work (MISS)/What Happens During MISS?

While the specifics of any spine surgery will vary depending on the condition being treated, the general steps of MISS involve:

  1. Small Incisions: Instead of a large incision along the back, as in traditional "open" spine surgery, surgeons using a minimally invasive approach will make several tiny puncture points. These tiny incisions serve as entry points for specialized instruments.
  2. Tubular Retractors: The surgeon inserts tubular retractors through the small incisions. These tubes gently push muscles and soft tissues aside, creating a working tunnel access to the affected area without significant muscle disruption.
  3. Visualization and Guidance: The surgeon relies on fluoroscopy (real-time X-ray imaging) and microscopic visualization to navigate the surgical field and ensure precise instrument placement.
  4. Minimally Invasive Instruments: Specialized instruments designed for smaller incisions and intricate maneuvers are used to perform the intended MISS procedure. These instruments might include drills, bone removal tools, implant placement devices, and suture implements.
  5. Minimally Invasive Techniques: Various MISS techniques can be employed depending on the condition being treated. Some common examples include:
    Lumbar Discectomy: Removal of herniated disc material that is causing nerve compression.
    Laminectomy: Decompression of spinal nerves by removing a portion of the bony lamina (roof) over the spinal canal.
    Spinal Fusion: Stabilization of vertebrae using bone grafts, implants, and screws to alleviate pain and instability.
    Kyphoplasty: Vertebral fracture repair using balloon kyphoplasty to restore height and stability to the spine.
  6. Closure and Recovery: Once the MISS procedure is complete, the incisions are closed with sutures or small adhesive strips. Hospital stays are typically shorter with MISS than traditional "open" spine surgery, and recovery times are often faster due to less tissue disruption.

Benefits of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

Compared to traditional open surgery, MISS offers several possible advantages:

  • Smaller incisions – reducing the risk of infection and scarring.
  • Less muscle disruption- minimizing postoperative pain and encouraging a faster recovery.
  • Shorter hospital stays – resulting in a potentially quicker return to daily activities and job duties.
  • Potentially less blood loss – helping to decrease the risk of complications.

Is Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Right for You?

While MISS offers numerous benefits, it's not suitable for all cases. Your suitability for MISS depends on various factors, including:

  • The severity and location of your spinal condition.
  • Your overall health and medical history.
  • The expertise and experience of your surgeon.

Consulting with a qualified spine surgeon specializing in MISS is crucial to determine if this approach is right for you. They can thoroughly evaluate your condition, discuss the potential risks and benefits, and develop a personalized treatment plan tailored to your needs.

Minimally invasive spine surgery represents a significant advancement in surgical techniques, offering a less invasive and more patient-friendly approach to treating chronic back pain and other spinal conditions. If you're struggling with chronic back pain and considering surgical options, discussing MISS with your doctor may open doors to a quicker and less disruptive path to pain relief and improved quality of life.

Why Choose Us

Our center has pioneered minimally invasive spine procedures and researched new techniques over our more than 20 years in clinical practice. Dr. Anand is a leading expert on minimally invasive spine surgery. He has extensive training in motion preservation techniques that allows him to improve a patient’s mobility after surgery.
When you come to The Anand Spine Group, you will receive both compassionate and advanced care and from our highly qualified team of physicians and nurses.
Call us today at (310) 423-9779 to take that first step down the road to recovery.