Minimally Invasive, Maximally Efficient: Exploring The Advantages Of MIS Joint Replacement

The Rise And Rise Of Joint Replacements

Once a luxury for individuals with severe joint damage due to injury or joint degeneration, joint replacements are now much more commonplace. The surgery is essential to improving mobility and function. Rates of arthritis and joint damage are increasing, especially with an aging population. On average, surgeons perform more than 1 million joint replacements yearly. The surgery removes damaged or diseased cartilage and bone in a joint and installs a prosthesis. This prosthetic joint is made of metal, plastic, or a combination of materials. Joint replacements have also increased significantly due to minimally invasive surgery (MIS), a technique that benefits surgeons and patients alike.

Understanding minimally invasive surgery

Joint replacements were once long, complex procedures that used traditional open surgery techniques. Open surgery involves making a large incision several inches along the surgical site. The tissue and muscles are moved to the side to access the bone and perform the joint replacement. This option is still used today, but more surgeons are opting for minimally invasive surgery. MIS is any surgery that uses smaller incisions and an arthroscope device, a long, thin tube with a light and camera attachment that transmits images to an external monitor. The surgeon can clearly see the joint damage without having to make a large incision. MIS is used not only in joint repair but also in various diagnostic and elective procedures for different parts of the body.

MIS promotes efficiency

What makes MIS so appealing is the increased doctor efficiency. The surgery only has to make small incisions, reducing the complicated nature of joint replacement. The scope also provides a more accurate view of the joint damage, allowing for faster and more accurate procedures. Doctors can also perform more joint replacements over time. With new techniques, such as robotic-arm assisted joint replacement, surgeons can confidently perform faster and more successful joint replacements over time.

MIS means reduced tissue damage

Traditional joint replacement leaves patients with a large scar at the surgical site. Some patients who are prone to scarring or keloids are disappointed with the unpleasant cosmetic results of open surgery. With MIS, the patient is left with 2-3 small scars around the joint. The procedure allows the surgeon to remove the bone and install the new joint through these smaller incisions. The incisions heal faster, with less post-operative pain and a more aesthetically pleasing outcome for the patient.

MIS means fewer complications

Surgery is not without risk. Traditional joint replacements can lead to complications like infections, blood loss, pain, and slower healing. There is also a chance of joint replacement failure. While complications exist with MIS, the risk is much lower than with open surgery. The accurate and efficient nature of MIS means there is less tissue damage and blood loss. Therefore, the patient is less likely to experience risky complications. With a low complication rate, MIS is much more efficient as the patient does not have to return to the hospital for treatment.

MIS gives the patient control

Minimally invasive joint replacement is an outpatient procedure, meaning patients can leave a few hours after surgery. As the surgery is elective, the patient can decide the best date and time for joint replacement. The MIS technique has brought about the rise of ambulatory surgical centers (ASC), which can help patients set a date and time for surgery without the risk of cancellations or delays. Patients are also less likely to be exposed to infectious agents at an ASC. The surgeons at an ASC only perform minimally invasive surgeries, so there is a more collaborative effort between patients and surgeons.

Get a new joint with MIS

In many cases, a joint impacted by severe arthritis can benefit from joint replacement. Yet, the type of surgery matters. While open surgery can provide a successful new joint, there are drawbacks to traditional techniques. MIS, on the other hand, is a more efficient option for patients and doctors. MIS has become the preferred choice with faster surgeries, more minor scars, and fewer complications.


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