Minimally invasive spine surgery, often referred to as MIS surgery, involves techniques that utilize smaller incisions, disrupt less muscle and enable a faster recovery.
Traditional open spine surgery involves large, open incisions which greatly disrupts muscle and tissue, leading to larger amounts of blood loss and longer hospital stays and recover time. With Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery or MIS surgery, the goal is smaller incisions, and less tissue and muscle disruption, less blood loss. These techniques then result in shorter length of stay in the hospital and a faster recovery. MIS also shortens hospital stays and recovery for patients.
I think of MIS surgery to mean many different techniques. Often we use very small retractors or “tube” retractors to gain access to the spine. These small retractors disrupt much less muscle while still allowing adequate access to the spine.