Written by: Stephen P. Banco, MD, FAAOS
Board-Certified, Fellowship-Trained Orthopaedic Spinal Surgeon
The MILD procedure, or minimally invasive lumbar decompression, is a surgical procedure that is used to treat spinal stenosis. However, it is a surgical procedure performed by non-surgeons. The procedure involves removing small pieces of bone and tissue that are causing pressure on the spinal nerves, which can alleviate pain and improve mobility. While the MILD procedure is minimally invasive and can be performed on an outpatient basis, there are some potential detriments to consider.
One of the main detriments of the MILD procedure is that it may not be effective for all patients with spinal stenosis. The procedure is best suited for patients with mild to moderate spinal stenosis, and it may not be effective for patients with more severe cases. Patients who have undergone the MILD procedure may still experience pain and mobility issues after surgery, and they may require additional treatment or surgery to address their symptoms.
Another potential detriment of the MILD procedure is that it is a relatively new procedure, and there is limited data on its long-term efficacy and safety. While early studies have shown promising results, more research is needed to determine the long-term outcomes of the procedure. Patients considering the MILD procedure should seek and opinion from a surgeon about the risks and benefits of the procedure and what to expect in terms of recovery and outcomes.
Like any surgical procedure, the MILD procedure carries risks, including bleeding, infection, and nerve damage. While these risks are relatively low with the MILD procedure, they are still present, and patients should be aware of them before undergoing the procedure.
Finally, the MILD procedure can be expensive, and it may not be covered by insurance. Patients who are considering the procedure should check with their insurance provider to determine if it is covered and what their out-of-pocket costs will be. The cost of the procedure may be a deterrent for some patients, particularly those who do not have insurance or who have limited financial resources.