Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

Minimally invasive spine surgery is one of the biggest advancements in the field of spine surgery in recent years. Rather than using a large incision and lengthy operation, minimally invasive approaches put less strain on the body.

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In traditional open spine surgery an incision is made, and the muscles of the lower back are cut from the spine, often causing blood loss and severing some nerve attachments.

In minimally invasive spine surgery, a large incision is not necessary. The muscles of the back are spared. The surgeon uses small incisions and then guides instruments through these incisions to reach the spine. A special microscope and real-time imaging to help guide the instruments, allowing for more precision. No muscle is cut.

Time under general anesthesia, length of stay in the hospital and recovery time from a traditional “open” back surgery typically is longer than with minimally invasive surgery.

Surgeons at Norton Leatherman Spine, are dedicated to getting you back to living your life. Our surgeons are leaders in the field of minimally invasive spine surgery. They have long experience using robotic assistance to provide greater precision navigating to the site of diseased vertebra and making repairs with less disruption to surrounding tissue.

Benefits of Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

Minimally invasive spine surgery can have several important benefits over traditional open surgery:

  • Smaller incisions
  • Less blood loss
  • Less pain
  • Less soft tissue damage
  • Usually shorter hospital stay
  • Usually quicker recovery

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Although not everyone is a candidate for minimally invasive surgery, the vast majority of patients may be treated with muscle-sparing techniques that are less disruptive than traditional open surgery.

We encourage our patients to explore all options before consenting to open surgery.

Minimally invasive surgery can significantly reduce postoperative pain, infection risk and time in the hospital. Many minimally invasive procedures can be performed on an outpatient basis, avoiding a two- to six-day hospital stay often associated with open surgery.

Our Surgeons Are Leaders in the Field

Charles H. Crawford III, M.D.

Mladen Djurasovic, M.D. – Dr. Djurasovic has been a national leader in minimally invasive lumbar spine surgery techniques for over 15 years. In particular, he pioneered a procedure called MidLIF that combines minimally invasive access with a standard anatomical approach.

Jeffrey L. Gum, M.D. –  Dr. Gum has been a leader in the development of robotic-assisted minimally invasive spinal surgery.

R. Kirk Owens II, M.D.

Minimally invasive spine surgery techniques can be used to treat many conditions, including:

About Norton Leatherman Spine

Norton Leatherman Spine is a combined team of orthopedic spine surgeons, neurosurgeons from Norton Neuroscience Institute and pain management specialists who provide care for adults and children from Louisville and Southern Indiana, as well as from across the region, nation and world.

  • The multidisciplinary team incorporates expertise from a variety of specialties to offer a comprehensive array of treatment options that include minimally invasive and nonsurgical therapies.
  • Our team approach to the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of spine conditions works cooperatively with primary care physicians and other specialists to develop a treatment plan as unique as each individual.
  • Because you may not need surgery, you may work with our pain management team, physical therapy specialists and others who can create a care plan with the right types of treatments for you.
  • If you need surgery, you’re in experienced hands. Norton Leatherman Spine physicians perform more than 4,000 surgeries a year.
  • Our team has more than 45 specialists at nearly 20 offices across Louisville and Southern Indiana. Many offer same-day appointments and Saturday hours, with no referral needed
  • Our specialists are internationally recognized leaders in clinical research of spinal disease, injury and deformity, and have served in senior positions in the Scoliosis Research Society, the most prestigious organization for scoliosis surgeons around the world.
  • Norton Healthcare is the first health system in the nation to be recognized as an Advanced Orthopedic & Spine Center of Excellence by DNV.
  • We offer minimally invasive and robotic-assisted procedures that carry less risk and can speed your recovery.
  • We use the EOS Imaging system, which collects high-resolution images while exposing the patient to 50% to 85% less radiation than traditional X-rays and 95% less than basic CT scans. The system is especially beneficial to scoliosis patients who often need repeated imaging to monitor their progress.
  • Use MyNortonChart to communicate with your provider, manage appointments, refill prescriptions and more, anytime from a mobile device or computer

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