Minimally Invasive Spine Procedures

Safer, less-painful surgical options to treat spine conditions.

Spine surgery is a complex procedure that can have some drawbacks for the patient. In order to access the problem area in traditional open-spine surgery, surgeons have to move back muscles aside. This can cause tissue damage and lead to longer recovery.

Minimally invasive spine surgery is one way we make the process easier and safer.

What makes minimally invasive spine surgery different from other spine surgeries?

Minimally invasive spine procedures generally have several benefits compared to other spine surgeries:

  • They’re safer than open surgery
  • They allow you to recover faster
  • They cause less pain and scarring
  • They usually require shorter or no hospital stays

Minimally invasive spine procedures we offer

We’re able to provide a wide range of minimally invasive spine procedures because of minimal access spine technology, also known as MAST. Henry Ford Hospital was the first hospital in Michigan to use this technology.

Our spine surgeons also were the first in Michigan to offer minimally invasive spine surgery for many spinal conditions, including:

The minimally invasive spine procedures we offer include:

Cervical discectomy

This procedure lets our doctors relieve pressure on a patient’s spinal cord or nerve root. We access the cervical spine, or the spinal column bones (vertebrae) in the neck, through a small incision in the front or back of the neck. You may need a bone graft and metal plate during this surgery.


Bone spurs, which are growths that form on the joints in the lower back, can narrow the spinal canal. This can compress the spinal cord and spinal nerves. In a corpectomy, we remove a portion of the vertebrae and the nearby intervertebral discs (layers of cartilage between vertebrae) to relieve this compression.

Interbody fusion

During this procedure, our doctors remove an intervertebral disc and fill the empty area with a special spacer to better support the spine.


We use kyphoplasty to correct a type of back fracture known as a vertebral body compression fracture (VCF). During this procedure, our surgeons reshape a broken vertebra, or spine bone, and stabilize it with a cementlike material.


Some patients -- typically children -- can have restricted spinal canals in their necks. We use a laminoplasty to create more space for the spinal cord and nerve roots and relieve the pressure this restriction causes.


Protruded or ruptured discs, bone spurs, or thickened ligaments or facet joints (small joints between the vertebrae that allow you to flex and twist your back) can compress the roots of your spinal nerves. This can cause neck or back pain, stiffness, or pain in your arms and legs.

We use a laminotomy or foraminotomy to enlarge the spaces where spinal nerve roots leave the spinal canal to reduce this pressure and relieve these symptoms.

Spinal fusion

In a spinal fusion, we bring together two bony segments of the spine. A spinal fusion might be a good choice for patients with advanced degenerative process of the spine or other advanced conditions, such as a fractured spine after a car accident.

Optimizing patient care with advanced 3-D technology


Innovative designs like the ExcelciusGPSTM are revolutionizing minimally invasive spine surgery and optimizing patient care by combining the benefits of navigation and robotics into one technology. An especially valuable advantage of ExcelciusGPSTM is that it allows neurosurgeons to make even safer, more consistent and smaller incisions, and this can promote healing and lessen scaring.

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