10 Popular Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures

10 Popular Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures

In the past, there was a good reason to put off surgery for as long as possible; their large incisions meant a higher risk for complications and lengthy recovery times. Fortunately, things have changed.

Nowadays, surgeons can often use minimally invasive techniques to treat even the most complex issues. These approaches ensure fewer risks, less pain, and faster recovery times. Thomas F. Saylor, MD, of Orthopaedic Care Specialists in North Palm Beach, Florida, specializes in these methods for injuries in the hands and upper extremities. 

In this blog, Dr. Saylor discusses 10 popular minimally invasive surgical procedures that he performs at his practice.

1. Carpal tunnel release

The carpal tunnel is a small passageway in the wrist that allows the median nerve to pass through. If this passageway gets constricted, this can put pressure on the nerve, which can lead to hand pain, tingling, and numbness.

Without treatment, this condition can worsen and lead to permanent dysfunction in the hand.

2. Trigger finger release

Another common problem that can impact the hands is called trigger finger. 

This issue causes pain in the palm at the base of the fingers because of a tendon problem. It also causes the telltale sign of the condition — a finger that catches or becomes stuck in a bent position when trying to make a fist or straighten it, like you’re trying to pull a trigger. 

3. Rotator cuff repair

Rotator cuff injuries impact millions of people each year. They typically occur from falling onto an outstretched hand, repetitive stress, or natural tissue degeneration due to aging. These shoulder injuries often cause significant pain and disability without treatment.

4. SLAP injuries

Injuries to the superior labrum anterior to posterior — or SLAP — develop in the fibrocartilage that lines the shoulder socket where your upper arm bone sits. These common injuries often occur from repetitive stress, such as from serving a tennis ball or throwing a ball. However, these injuries can also occur due to falls on the shoulder and from accidents that cause joint dislocations.

5. Arthritis

Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive treatment that can diagnose and treat joint problems, making it a highly valuable solution for arthritis. Arthritis is an umbrella term for issues that cause inflammation to one or more joints. 

Dr. Saylor can use arthroscopy to repair damaged cartilage, remove deteriorated tissue or bone spurs, or even replace a joint entirely.

6. Total joint replacement

Joint replacement surgery used to require months of downtime. Minimally invasive techniques make the process easier than ever, and they’re an option for joints all over the body, including the shoulders, hands, and fingers.

7. Wrist fractures

Whether you have a minor or severe break in a bone, it needs to get put back into its ideal position to heal properly. Sometimes, Dr. Saylor can do this with hands-on pressure. If he can’t, minimally invasive surgery can often help. He can also use these methods to insert stabilizing structures if needed, such as rods, pins, screws, or plates.

8. Ligament tears in the wrist

Ligaments are tough bands of tissue that connect bone to bone. And while they’re strong and flexible, they can only handle so much strain. When pushed beyond their limits, a sprain or tear can occur, leading to instability in the affected area.

Sprained wrists are a very common injury, and they often occur due to falls on an outstretched hand. If you have a minor sprain, it can usually heal on its own with self-care. However, severe injuries can cause ongoing issues, including chronic pain, stiffness, and arthritis.

9. Tendon reattachment 

The tendons in your body connect muscles to bones. For instance, flexor tendons run from your forearm across the palm of your hand, giving you the ability to bend your fingers. And, extensor tendons run from the forearm and back of your hand to your fingers and thumb so you can straighten them. 

If tendons become damaged or torn, you can lose function in the affected area.

10. Removal of cysts, bone spurs, and scar tissue

Finally, minimally invasive procedures provide ideal solutions for removing problematic tissue from the body, whether it involves cysts, bone spurs, or scar tissue.

This is only the tip of the iceberg for minimally invasive surgery. If you have a painful condition or have lost function, minimally invasive surgery may be able to help you.

To learn more about the treatment options for your hand or upper extremity condition, call 561-260-5993 to request an appointment with Orthopaedic Care Specialists today.

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