(Canada) Ontario

In recent years, advancements in medical technology have revolutionized spinal surgery procedures. Minimally invasive spine surgery (MISS) is among these innovations. MISS is a less invasive alternative to traditional open spine surgery.

If you are suffering from a spinal condition, you can consider a MISS procedure. But first, talk to a neuro-interventional surgeon and find out if you are eligible. We at LAMIS Institute provide MISS procedures to address various spinal conditions like spinal tumors and herniated disks. We help patients alleviate their spinal problems to reduce pain and lead a quality life. Contact our Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery team to schedule a consultation and learn more about how minimally invasive spine surgery can benefit you.

What Is Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?

Minimally invasive spine surgery is a technique used to treat various spinal problems with minimal disruption to the surrounding tissues and muscles. Unlike traditional open spine surgery, which involves a large incision and muscle retraction, MISS involves making smaller incisions, approximately a half inch, using specialized instruments. This surgical treatment minimizes the risk of infection, minimizes postoperative pain, and promotes quicker recovery times.

MISS procedures utilize advanced imaging techniques, such as fluoroscopy and intraoperative navigation, to guide the surgeon precisely. These technologies allow for accurate targeting of the affected region while sparing healthy tissue. Common conditions treated with MISS include herniated discs, spinal stenosis, and degenerative disc disease.

Who Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Is Ideal For

MISS is suitable for a wide range of patients with various spinal conditions. Ideal candidates for MISS are those experiencing chronic back or neck pain that has not responded to conservative treatments such as physical therapy, medications, or injections. Common spinal problems MISS treats could include:

  • Spinal stenosis
  • Herniated discs
  • Scoliosis
  • Spinal tumors
  • Degenerative disc disease

Patients who benefit most from our Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery are those who require surgical intervention but are seeking a less invasive option with quicker recovery times. MISS is particularly advantageous for older adults or individuals with underlying health conditions who may face higher risks with conventional open surgery. By minimizing tissue disruption and blood loss, MISS offers a safer alternative for these patients.

However, MISS is not suitable for everyone. Certain complex spinal conditions may still require conventional open surgery. Patients need to undergo a thorough evaluation by a qualified neuro-interventional surgeon to determine the most appropriate treatment plan.

Who is Not a Candidate for MISS Procedure?

Even if minimally invasive spine surgery offers numerous benefits, it is not suitable for every patient. Those with extensive spinal degeneration, severe spinal deformities, or large tumors may not be candidates for MISS. you may also require alternative treatments if you have any of the following conditions:

  • Extensive Spinal Degeneration. If you have severe spinal degeneration or advanced arthritis, you cannot undergo MISS because the surgery may not effectively address widespread deterioration.
  • Severe Spinal Deformities. Conditions like severe scoliosis or kyphosis often require more extensive surgical interventions than MISS can provide. Traditional open surgery might be necessary to correct significant deformities.
  • Large Tumors. Patients with large or malignant spinal tumors may require more invasive procedures to ensure complete removal and proper treatment, which MISS may not be able to achieve.
  • Spinal Infections. Active infections in the spine, like osteomyelitis, can complicate surgery and recovery. These patients typically need infection control before considering surgery.
  • Severe Osteoporosis: Individuals with severe osteoporosis have brittle bones, increasing the risk of fractures during or after surgery. MISS may not provide the necessary stabilization for such fragile bones.
  • Previous Extensive Spine Surgery. If you have a history of multiple or complex spine surgeries, you might have scar tissue or anatomical changes that complicate further minimally invasive procedures.
  • Body Weight. Extremely obese patients might face higher risks with MISS due to difficulties in accessing the spine and potential complications during surgery.
  • Conditions such as uncontrolled diabetes, cardiovascular issues, or respiratory problems can increase surgical risks. These patients might not be suitable candidates for MISS until their overall health improves.

Common Ontario Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Options

Minimally invasive spine surgery encompasses various procedures tailored to treat specific spinal conditions. Here are some common MISS treatment options:


In this procedure, one or more vertebral bodies and the intervertebral discs are removed to relieve pressure on the spinal cord and nerves. This surgery is often performed to treat conditions like spinal stenosis, tumors, or fractures.

Your surgeon makes a small incision and uses specialized instruments to remove the affected vertebrae. The space created by the removed vertebrae is then filled with a bone graft or an implant to stabilize the spine.

Corpectomies are beneficial because they can alleviate significant pain and neurological deficits caused by severe spinal cord compression.


CyberKnife® is a non-invasive, robotic radiosurgery system used to treat spinal tumors and other abnormalities.

Unlike traditional surgery, CyberKnife® delivers high-dose radiation beams with pinpoint accuracy to target and destroy tumor cells while sparing healthy surrounding tissue. This treatment is particularly beneficial if you have a spinal tumor that is inoperable or you cannot undergo conventional surgery due to other health issues.

During a CyberKnife® procedure, you lie on a treatment table while the robotic arm moves around you, delivering radiation from various angles. The system's advanced imaging technology ensures precise targeting, adjusting in real-time to account for any movement you make. Each session typically lasts 30 to 90 minutes, and most patients require several sessions over a week.


Another Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery, foraminotomy, enlarges the foramen. This is where nerve roots leave the spinal canal. Foraminotomy relieves nerve compression caused by conditions such as herniated discs, spinal stenosis, or bone spurs.

When undergoing foraminotomy, your surgeon makes a small incision and uses specialized instruments to remove bone or tissue pressing on the nerve root. Advanced imaging techniques, like fluoroscopy or endoscopy, guide the surgeon to the precise location, ensuring minimal disruption to surrounding tissues.

With this procedure, you have reduced postoperative pain, minimal scarring, and a shorter recovery period than conventional open surgery. Patients who undergo this procedure at LAMISS in Ontario can expect improved mobility and relief from pain and neurological symptoms.


This procedure involves removing part of the lamina, the back part of a vertebra, to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. This procedure is commonly used to solve problems like herniated discs, spinal stenosis, and spinal tumors.

Like foraminotomy, laminectomy involves a small incision made using specialized tools to remove the lamina and any other structures compressing the nerves. Your surgeon uses advanced imaging techniques, such as fluoroscopy or endoscopy, to guide them to the precise location, ensuring minimal disruption to surrounding tissues.

The advantages of this surgical treatment option are similar to those of foraminotomy. These include reduced muscle damage, less postoperative pain, and a quicker recovery time

Advantages of an Ontario Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

MISS offers several advantages over traditional open surgery. These benefits include:

  • Smaller Incisions – MISS procedures involve smaller incisions compared to traditional open surgery, resulting in less tissue damage and a reduced risk of infection.
  • Faster Recovery – If you undergo MISS, you could have shorter hospital stays and faster recovery times than undergoing open surgery, allowing you to return to your daily activities sooner.
  • Less Blood Loss – Minimally invasive techniques cause less blood loss during the procedure, minimizing the need for blood transfusions and the risk of complications.
  • Reduced Pain – MISS procedures are associated with less postoperative pain and discomfort compared to open surgery, leading to improved patient satisfaction and quality of life.
  • Preserved Muscle Function – Minimally invasive options minimize disruption to surrounding muscles and tissues, preserving muscle function and reducing the risk of long-term complications.
  • Lower Risk of Complications – The reduced trauma associated with MISS leads to a lower risk of complications such as wound infection, nerve damage, and blood clots.
  • Improved Cosmesis – Smaller incisions cause less noticeable scars and improve cosmetic outcomes for patients undergoing MISS.

Preparing For Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

When preparing for an Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery, you want to schedule a meeting with your neuro-interventional surgeon to discuss the details of the procedure, including potential risks and benefits. Use this opportunity to ask any questions you may have and address any concerns.

You will undergo a thorough medical evaluation to ensure you are in good overall health and eligible for surgery. This may include blood tests, imaging studies, and other diagnostic tests as needed.

Next, review your current medications with your physician and follow any instructions regarding which medications to continue or stop before undergoing surgery. Certain medications, like blood thinners, may need to be adjusted to reduce the risk of bleeding during surgery.

If you smoke, you should quit before surgery. Smoking impairs the body's ability to heal and heightens the risk of pre- and post-surgery complications. Also, eat a balanced diet to ensure your body has the nutrients it needs for optimal healing. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains, and stay hydrated.

You should stay physically active within your limitations leading up to surgery. Engaging in regular exercise can help improve strength, flexibility, and overall health, which can facilitate a smoother recovery. Lastly, follow the preoperative guidelines your surgeon gives you. For example, fasting before surgery or showering with a special antibacterial soap. These instructions are designed to minimize the risk of complications and ensure a safe surgical experience.

What Happens During the MISS Procedure?

An Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery procedure involves several key steps to ensure optimal outcomes for patients.

Before surgery, you undergo a comprehensive evaluation, which may include imaging studies such as X-rays, MRIs, or CT scans. This helps your surgeon assess the extent of the spinal condition and plan the surgical approach accordingly.

During the procedure, you are placed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation to ensure you remain comfortable and pain-free throughout the surgery. The surgeon makes small incisions, typically less than an inch in length, at the surgical site. These incisions serve as access points for specialized instruments and cameras used during the procedure.

Advanced imaging techniques, like fluoroscopy or endoscopy, are used to provide real-time visualization of the surgical site. This allows the surgeon to navigate spine anatomy with precision and accuracy. Specialized instruments are used to gently separate and retract muscles and other soft tissues, providing access to the spine while minimizing trauma to surrounding structures.

Depending on the specific spinal condition being treated, the surgeon performs the necessary steps of the procedure, such as removing herniated discs, decompressing nerves, or stabilizing the spine with implants.

Once the procedure is complete, the surgeon closes the incisions with sutures or surgical staples. Sterile dressings are applied to the incision sites to promote healing and prevent infection.

After surgery, patients are monitored in the recovery area before being transferred to a hospital room or discharged home, depending on the complexity of the procedure and their individual recovery needs.

What Happens After Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery?

After undergoing an Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery, patients are monitored closely in the recovery area by medical staff. Vital signs such as blood pressure, heart rate, and oxygen levels are monitored to ensure stability. You may experience some discomfort or pain after surgery, which is managed with pain medications prescribed by the surgeon. These medications help alleviate pain and promote comfort during the initial recovery period.

Depending on the specific procedure, your surgeon might ask you to begin moving and walking as soon as possible after surgery. Early mobilization helps prevent complications like blood clots and promotes healing.

Many MISS patients are discharged home on the same day of surgery. However, at times, you might need to remain hospitalized. The length of hospital stay depends on the complexity of the procedure and your recovery progress.

Risks of an Ontario Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

MISS carries certain risks and potential complications. Some of the potential risks associated with MISS are:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Nerve injury
  • Dural tear
  • Implant failure
  • Blood clots
  • Anesthesia risks
  • Adjacent segment degeneration

Even if risks are uncommon, you should speak with your surgeon and weigh the potential benefits against the risks before undergoing minimally invasive spine surgery.

Find a Neuro-Interventional Surgeon Near Me

If you have a spinal issue and are considering an Ontario minimally invasive spine surgery, consult us at LAMIS Institute. We have skilled and experienced neuro-interventional surgeons who specialize in these procedures. Our team is dedicated to providing comprehensive and personalized care to address your spinal conditions. Contact us today at 310-734-6088 to improve your spinal health.

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