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How Innovative Technologies Are Driving Medicine






     Over the years, two significant things have continued to happen in modern medicine: we've furthered our understanding of how the body works and medical technology has rapidly grown in areas that were inconceivable as recently as a decade ago. As a result, many conditions, ailments, and even diseases can be treated with much more accuracy and thoroughness than in previous generations. And, perhaps, nowhere is this expansion in technology quite as prevalent as with spine surgery.

To illustrate this point, it can be helpful to work under the confines of a general example. Consider, for the purposes of this article, that you suffer from a herniated disc in your lower back. This condition often develops in older individuals as a result of years of wear and tear on the spinal column, and is defined as a rupture in the outer disc wall, which allows the inner nuclear material to extrude from the disc and seep into the spinal column.

In years past, if you suffered from chronic back pain or other symptoms as a result of the presence of a herniated disc, and no nonsurgical treatment had delivered the results you wanted, your only real option was to schedule a spinal fusion procedure. During this surgery, the team of surgeons would make a large incision, cut through muscles and other soft tissue, and eventually make their way into the spinal canal. Once in position, the surgeon would remove the degenerated disc, replace it with a bone graft, and stabilize the affected vertebrae with surgical hardware.

The problem with this approach is that it is highly invasive and requires the patient to undergo several weeks or even months of post-operative rehabilitation to return to full strength. Then, when you consider the risk for potential complications, such as infection, hemorrhaging, or even graft rejection, the risks may overwhelm the potential good.

Today, on the other hand, if you had the same herniated disc, you've got many more options. While spinal fusion is an absolutely essential procedure for some patients particularly when spinal stability is at risk many other people are finding the relief they require thanks to state-of-the-art endoscopic technology.

The appeal of an endoscopic technique is that it takes advantage of highly technical medical equipment that can be inserted into the spinal column through a very small incision in the back. A series of telescoping tubes gently pushes tissue aside, rather than cutting it, greatly limiting collateral damage and helps reduce the length and difficulty of post-operative recovery. In fact, these procedures are so easy relatively speaking that they can usually be completed in an outpatient environment, meaning you can return home the same day as the procedure.

Of course, endoscopic spine surgery is just one example of the emerging technologies that are driving the medical field, but they speak to the new and innovative ways that we're treating the same problems that have afflicted individuals for years, such as herniated discs.

To learn more about innovative technologies in the medical field, speak with your doctor, read journals, and research all of your options before consenting to a surgery.

John Soland is an experienced writer who has written for a number of notable publications. As a lifestyle expert, Mr. Soland is able to offer advice and insight on a multitude of topics, including those pertaining to innovative technologies.

John Soland is an experienced writer who has written for a number of notable publications. As a lifestyle expert, Mr. Soland is able to offer advice and insight on a multitude of topics, including those pertaining to innovative technologies. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/laser-spine-institute-partners-with-marodyne-medical-to-offer-the-latest-in-low-intensity-vibration-science-2013-02-19




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John Soland is an experienced writer who has written for a number of notable publications. As a lifestyle expert, Mr. Soland is able to offer advice and insight on a multitude of topics, including those pertaining to innovative technologies.


Posted on 2013-06-05, By: *

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