A new approach to spinal fusion surgery is reported to result in less blood loss, less postoperative pain, smaller incisions, a shorter hospital stay, and faster recovery and return to work. The procedure is reported by Loyola University Medical Center spine surgeon Beejal Amin, MD, in an abstract and video appearing in Neurosurgical Focus. The technique involves dilation of the paraspinal muscles, rather than cutting through them, to gain access to the lumbar spine.
In a case study reported by Dr. Amin, a patient presented with debilitating leg pain and numbness due to degenerative spondylolisthesis and spinal stenosis. Using the procedure, he fused the L4 and L5 vertebrae, resulting in dramatic improvement in quality of life.
Read more about the procedure, with link to further information, here.