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What Are Minimally Invasive Surgeries?

Mar 5, 2024

Improvements in technology over the years has completely changed how surgery is performed today. Open surgeries are becoming less common, and minimally invasive procedures are becoming more and more popular. But what is minimally invasive surgery, and what does it mean for patients?

“Minimally invasive procedures and robot-assisted surgeries are becoming more advanced and have wonderful benefits for patients, lowering the risk of complications and allowing patients to heal faster,” said Chase Kriza, D.O., general surgeon at Inspira Health.

How minimally invasive surgeries work

“Minimally invasive surgeries are medical procedures performed through tiny incisions rather than larger cuts required in traditional open surgeries,” said Dr. Kriza. “These procedures usually involve specialized instruments like laparoscopes, endoscopes, and robotic systems.” These instruments carry miniature cameras and tools, that allow surgeons to view the operative area with precision and perform complex procedures in a less invasive way.

Benefits of minimally invasive surgeries

The benefits of minimally invasive surgeries are undeniable. Patients undergoing minimally invasive surgery have shorter recovery times, reduced pain and scarring, less blood loss, and a lower risk of complications compared to traditional open surgeries. However, not all surgeries can be performed in a minimally invasive manner. A patient’s medical condition and the complexity of the surgery are factors that may determine if minimally invasive surgery is a safe approach. 

Common types of minimally invasive surgeries

“Minimally invasive procedures are offered across various surgical fields, including general surgery, neurosurgery, orthopedics, vascular surgery, colorectal procedures, thoracic surgeries, gynecology, and urology,” said Dr. Kriza.

Some common types of minimally invasive surgeries include:

  • Laparoscopy: This involves inserting a laparoscope (a thin tube with a camera) through a small incision in the abdomen to view the internal organs and perform surgeries such as gallbladder removal, appendectomy, and some gynecological procedures.
  • Endoscopy: Procedures like gastroscopy (for examining the digestive tract), colonoscopy (for examining the colon) and bronchoscopy (for examining the airways and lungs) fall under this category. They use flexible tubes with cameras to visualize and, in some cases, treat issues within these systems.
  • Robot-assisted surgery: Surgeons control robotic arms equipped with surgical tools to perform precise movements through small incisions. This technology aids in various procedures like prostate surgery, cardiac surgery, and some types of hysterectomies.
  • Arthroscopy: Used to diagnose and treat joint problems, particularly in the knee, shoulder, hip, and wrist, by inserting a small camera and tools through tiny incisions.

Talk to your doctor

Minimally invasive surgery is progressing every day, offering patients a path to quicker recovery, reduced discomfort, and improved health outcomes.

“The thought of surgery can be scary. That’s why we take our time with each patient and encourage them to ask any questions that are on their mind,” said Dr. Kriza. “When a patient truly understands their treatment plan, it leads to a quicker and smoother road to recovery. That is always our goal.”

To learn more about minimally invasive surgeries, visit our website.

Topics: Surgical Services