Why Is Keyhole Surgery Preferred For The Spine?

If you have been dealing with spinal health issues such as a slipped disc or nerve compression for a while, your doctor may be recommending that you go in for surgery. In pursuing this solution, you will quickly realize that there are two approaches: open surgery and keyhole surgery. Keyhole surgery, also known a minimally invasive surgery, costs more and insurance does not always completely cover it. However, it is almost always the better option for spinal procedures. Here's why.

1. Keyhole surgery does less damage to the muscles.

In order to access your spine, the surgeon will need to cut through several layers of muscle. This is damaging; it will take your body time to heal from the muscle damage after surgery. You use your back muscles for almost everything, so having them damaged can really make it hard to function. With an open surgical procedure, the incisions through the muscle are large. With a keyhole procedure, the incisions are much smaller — sometimes only an inch long. This is a lot less muscle damage for your body to heal and means you'll be able to get back into action faster after surgery.

2. Keyhole surgery means you won't have to be as reliant on pain relievers.

Pain reliever dependence can be a real issue for anyone with ongoing back pain. One reason you may be having surgery is so that you don't have to keep using so many pain relievers. Since keyhole surgery is less invasive, you won't have as much pain afterward, so you won't have to be as reliant on pain relievers. You may be able to get by with over-the-counter NSAIDs rather than opiates.

3. Keyhole surgery results in less blood loss.

There are a lot of blood vessels in your back, and any incisions in the area bleed a lot. Keyhole surgery, therefore, reduces blood loss pretty substantially. This means you won't feel as weak after surgery. You are less likely to need a blood transfusion, too.

4. Keyhole surgery leaves less of a scar.

If you have open surgery, you will have a pretty substantial scar across your back, which may be uncomfortable if you want to wear a bathing suit or a backless dress. Scars from keyhole surgery are much smaller and should be barely noticeable once they heal.

You may have to pay a little more for keyhole back surgery, but thanks to the advantages above, it is worth it. Speak with a professional to learn more about minimally invasive spine surgery options.