10 Conditions That Respond Well to Minimally Invasive Surgery

10 Conditions That Respond Well to Minimally Invasive Surgery

Surgery always comes with risks. However, procedures with smaller incisions make the same surgeries far less risky, painful, and traumatic on the body. The result? Better outcomes and faster recovery times.

At Brain and Spine Institute of New York and New Jersey, Dr. Arien Smith rounded out his training in neurosurgery with an additional orthopedic complex spine fellowship. This advanced medical training gives him an excellent combination of skills to treat a wide range of spinal and brain disorders in adults and children. 

Today, Dr. Smith performs surgery at several top-tier hospitals in the New Jersey and New York City area. Here, he shares a list of 10 conditions that respond well to minimally invasive surgery.

1. Degenerative disc disease

When you have degenerative disc disease, the intervertebral discs in your spine progressively deteriorate. Almost everyone experiences some form of degenerative disc disease after age 40, and it’s responsible for back pain in at least 5% of adults.

2. Herniated disc

A herniated disc in your spine occurs when the soft center of the disc bulges out of the tougher exterior, irritating or pressing on surrounding nerves. 

3. Spinal stenosis

Spinal stenosis describes a narrowing of the spaces in your spine, which puts pressure on nerves in the area. In most cases, this condition develops in your neck and lower back because of wear-and-tear on your spine.

4. Spinal infections

Spinal infections can develop anywhere in the spine, including the spinal column, the spinal canal, the intervertebral disc space, and adjacent soft tissue. The most common causes of spinal infection include bacteria called staphylococcus aureus and E. coli. However, fungal organisms can also lead to infection.

5. Spinal instability, including spondylolisthesis

Spinal instability is a painful condition that occurs when vertebrae in your spine slip out of position. For example, when you have spondylolisthesis, one of your lower vertebrae falls forward, resting on the bone underneath it.

6. Vertebral compression fractures

If you have a vertebral compression fracture, one of the vertebrae in your spine collapses. Dr. Smith sees this condition frequently in people with osteoarthritis, which causes bones to weaken. In severe cases, you can even fracture a weak bone in your spine from sneezing or coughing.

7. Spinal deformities, including scoliosis

When you have a spinal deformity, your spinal column isn’t in an ideal position. For example, if you have scoliosis, your spine curves to the side. Structural abnormalities like scoliosis can cause a variety of symptoms, including chronic back pain and breathing problems.

8. Chiari malformation

This uncommon condition occurs when brain tissue extends into a child’s spinal canal. Not all cases cause symptoms. However, sometimes this displaced tissue can lead to problems requiring surgical treatment.

9. Cerebral hemorrhage 

This serious condition describes bleeding in the brain — either in the brain itself or between your brain tissue and your skull. Without treatment, a cerebral hemorrhage can lead to brain damage and become life-threatening.

10. Spinal and brain tumors

In the past, doctors needed large incisions to address abnormal growths of tissue in the spine or brain. However, minimally invasive surgical approaches provide greater tumor treatment options by allowing Dr. Smith to access difficult-to-reach spaces while causing minimal damage to surrounding tissue.

Do you have a brain or spine condition that hasn’t responded to conservative treatments? Schedule a consultation with Dr. Arien Smith to learn if minimally invasive surgery could help. Contact Brain and Spine Institute of New York and New Jersey at the location nearest you by calling or booking a visit online today.

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