The MILD procedure, being minimally invasive, allows the patient to resume normal daily activities quickly, typically within 24 hours. In addition, the procedure does not alter the spine’s structural stability.
What is Lumbar Spinal Stenosis?
Lumbar spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal in the lower back. Pain or numbness in the lower back when standing upright or walking can result from lumbar spinal stenosis. The condition can also cause pain, numbness, or tingling in the legs or buttocks. Sitting or leaning forward may help provide relief.
What Is the MILD Procedure for Lumbar Spinal Stenosis?
The MILD procedure for lumbar spinal stenosis helps open the spinal canal to relieve pressure on the spinal cord or other nerves. The procedure is also referred to as percutaneous image-guided lumbar decompression (PILD).
During the MILD procedure, the doctor uses needle-like instruments to remove a portion of bone or part of a thickened ligament in the back of the spinal column to increase spinal canal space and reduce nerve root impingement.
Since receiving FDA clearance in 2014, the MILD procedure for lumbar spinal stenosis has been helping treat patients requiring long-term pain management. Patients with lumbar spinal stenosis and thickened ligaments are candidates for this type of decompression procedure.
How The MILD Procedure Works
The MILD procedure uses specialized surgical tools and innovative imaging technology to decompress the lumbar spine. Then, tiny incisions in the back allow the doctor to increase spinal column space, significantly reducing pressure on the nerves and helping lessen the pain of spinal stenosis.
The minimally invasive nature of the surgery does not cause any unnecessary trauma to the surrounding tissue. In addition, it rarely requires general anesthesia. The patient typically goes home soon after the procedure since only small incisions are necessary, and the patient rarely requires stitches.
A survey of patients suffering from lumbar spinal stenosis found those receiving the MILD procedure experienced significantly more pain relief than those receiving epidural steroid injections.