Traditional vs. minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery

Traditional vs. minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery Phoenix Spine & Joint

Back pain has a number of different causes. When it lasts longer than 12 weeks, back pain is probably due to an issue with the spine itself.

Spinal fusion surgery may be necessary in cases where your back pain is related to an issue in your spine. Doctors will usually try to use noninvasive methods for treating the conditions that affect your spine, but if it lasts longer than 12 weeks, these methods are usually not enough.

The reason doctors prefer to use other methods before surgery is because spinal surgery can be invasive. Thankfully, some surgeons like those at Phoenix Spine & Joint offer minimally-invasive spinal fusion as an option for people with back pain.

What’s the difference between traditional and minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery?

The goal of traditional and minimally invasive spinal surgery is the same. Both procedures aim to fuse two or more spinal joints together to limit movement, reduce pressure off the nerve and correct alignment issues. However, the approach these procedures take is different:

  • Traditional spinal fusion surgery is an intense procedure that requires a large incision, long surgery time, extended recovery time and anesthesia. Larger incisions for traditional surgeries also damage the muscles and other soft tissue, which causes pain and affects your recovery time.
  • Minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery requires a smaller incision to access the source of pain in the spine. Doctors use smaller instruments that operate with precision through small incisions.

    The risks of minimally invasive spinal fusion are much lower than traditional spinal fusion. There is a one thousand fold lower chance for blood loss and infection. People who have minimally invasive spinal fusion also recover faster.

Who needs minimally invasive spinal fusion surgery?

Minimally invasive spinal fusion may be right for people with:

  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Spinal fractures
  • Spinal deformities
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Bone infections
  • Tumors

At Phoenix Spine & Joint, our surgeons have more than 15 years of experience performing spinal fusions. Our team uses minimally invasive methods to ensure the best outcome possible from your procedure. However, minimally invasive spinal fusion is not the right surgery for everyone.

Some people with spinal conditions may be a fit for an ultra-minimally invasive procedure, such as direct visualized rhizotomy. Our doctors can examine your condition to decide which procedure is right for you.

Visit Phoenix Spine & Joint for minimally invasive spinal fusion

Minimally invasive spinal fusion can help reduce your pain and improve your quality of life. At Phoenix Spine & Joint, we have a high success rate with our spinal fusion procedures and a nearly zero percent infection rate at our facilities. Contact us today to talk to one of our patient care coordinators or to schedule a free second opinion.