Endoscopic spine surgery is the latest advancement in minimally invasive spine surgery. This procedure uses a endoscope: a device with a small camera at the end and a thin tunnel to pass instruments for removing discs, bone spurs, and tissue.

Endoscopes are commonly used by orthopaedic surgeons in the knee, shoulder, and hip. Recent advancements allow surgeons to use scopes in the spine as well. Patients suffering from compressed nerves are candidates for the procedure. 

The surgeon first makes a skin incision as small as 7mm. The scope is then placed through this small incision to the disc herniation. The disc herniation is then removed. This incision is smaller than any minimally invasive microdiskectomy, laminectomy, "laser surgery," or "ultrasonic surgery." 

Potential benefits of endoscopic surgery:

  • Possibly avoid fusion surgery

  • Small incisions (1cm or less)

  • Less pain after surgery

  • Lower risk of infection

  • Quicker return to normal activities

The procedure is covered by many health insurances.

Spine Endoscope

The Endoscope

Camera at the end of the endoscope


Endoscopic Spine Procedure

Camera inserted through a small incision