Minimally invasive spine surgery is an alternative to open surgery, and is being recommended for the treatment of certain neck and back conditions due to the reduced risk of serious damage to protective spinal tissue as well as faster recovery periods and less post-operative pain. Open surgery is described as a procedure in which a long incision is made to allow the surgeon to clearly view and access the targeted region in the back. Either form of surgery, minimally invasive or open, is only recommended if certain medical criteria are met. The criteria include:
- Pain that has been unresponsive to different types of medication or physical therapy
- A specific diagnosis such as spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spinal column), a herniated disc, scoliosis (abnormal curvature of the spine), etc.