Minimally invasive spine surgery (MISS) is a type of surgery on the bones of your spine (backbone). This type of surgery uses smaller incisions than standard surgery. This often causes less harm to nearby muscles and other tissues. It can lead to less pain and faster recovery after surgery.
The standard method of spine surgery is called open surgery. This uses a long incision down the back. The muscles and soft tissue around the spine would need to be moved away. In some cases, tissue would need to be removed.
During MISS, the healthcare provider makes a smaller incision. He or she then inserts a device called a tubular retractor. This is a stiff, tube-shaped tool. It creates a tunnel to the problem area of the spine. It gently pushes aside the muscle and soft tissue around the area. The surgeon can then put small tools through the tunnel to work on the spine. The surgeon also uses a special operating microscope and views real-time X-ray images of the spine.
Surgeons can use MISS for some types of spine surgery. These include lumbar discectomy, laminectomy, and spinal fusion.