It is the 30 year anniversary of the publication by Dr. Scott Schlesinger of the landmark article on the technique of minimally invasive far lateral disectomy approach. The publication was the outcome of a one year fellowship in minimally invasive neurosurgery at Le Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois (CHUV) in Lausanne Switzerland. This detailed study of the microanatomy of this unique approach along with the technique was published in ACTA Neurosurgica and subsequently presented to the European and American National Neurosurgical societies.
The operations main benefit is it spares the removal of the entire spine joint on the side of surgery (facet joint) thus minimizing the iatrogenic risk of future spinal instability and therefore lowers the chances of needing a lumbar fusion procedure. Therefore the standard alternative to this MIS approach involves doing a simultaneous lumbar fusion with instrumentation or in many cases the delayed need for such. The far lateral approach to ELLDH has been used by the authors in thousands of cases over the last 30 years both in Switzerland and in the United States with excellent outcomes. Also the anatomy learned in this research has subsequently been used by Dr. Scott Schlesinger to develop the SLIF MIS fusion surgery. This uses a far lateral approach for a “screw-less” standalone MIS decompression and interbody fusion.
Learn more about the unique offerings at Legacy Neuro of the SLIF and other MIS procedures including the ELLDH surgical option.
Click below to view the original article and to view several videos regarding this approach!