University of Southern California
Computer-aided Diagnosis (CAD)
Bone Age Assessment
Data Grid
RT Informatics
Informatics Beyond Radiology

Minimally Invasive Spinal Surgery ePR


Minimally invasive spinal surgery (MISS) is a microdecompressive spinal discectomy procedure for decompressing nerve roots compressed by spinal disc protrusions. This image-guided procedure utilizes a variety of still and real-time acquisition modalities including X-Ray, CT, MRI, digital fluoroscopy and digital endoscopic video. These techniques, when integrated, permit magnification, guidance and real-time course correction to insert a small tube into the body of the patient to remove its offending portion. MISS is different from standard spinal disc surgery because there is no traumatic muscle dissection, bone removal, or bone fusion. The incision is tiny enough to close with sutures and a small band-aid. Therefore, most of the complications that occur with conventional spine surgery are eliminated with this procedure.

There have been significant technical and clinical advances in MISS over the past decades. Recent developments in medical imaging, especially, have improved the clinical protocols surrounding this emerging procedure and have already demonstrated the potential for significantly improved clinical surgical outcomes. However, there still remain large gaps along the clinical continuum from diagnosis to surgical treatment and through post-operative follow-up that could be more fully addressed by a variety of advanced medical technologies. The long term objectives of this application focus on the development and integration of innovative imaging technologies tailored to bridge these clinical chasms.

Figure 1. MISS ePR Workflow

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