Minimally Invasive Discectomy

What Is A Minimally Invasive Discectomy?

Minimally Invasive Discectomy is a procedure used to treat pain caused as a result of disc herniations by removing only the herniated portions of the spinal disc while leaving the remaining portions of the disc intact.  By removing the herniated portions of disc, and any bone spurs, the spinal nerves that are causing pain and numbness are no longer impinged.

How is a Minimally Invasive Discectomy Performed?

In this procedure, a small half-inch incision is made directly above the damaged spinal disc.  A thin wire is then inserted down through incision and a series of dilators are lowered down to the spine over the guide wires.

Next, a fluoroscope (real time X-Ray) or small operative microscope is used to visualize the affected disc.  Once the damaged disc and surrounding areas are identified, the herniated portions of the spinal disc and/or any bone spurs are removed using small surgical tools. The incision is then closed and covered with a small bandage.   

In most cases, a Minimally Invasive Discectomy can be performed on an outpatient basis due to the reduced trauma to the spine and muscular structures.   In fact, most patients are up and walking shortly after this procedure and physical therapy will begin within a few days of the procedure, if needed.