What Is Minimally Invasive Surgery?

Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) is redefining the field of surgery. The term is used to describe a number of surgeries as well as diagnostic procedures. MIS includes both laparoscopy (surgery through small holes) and endoscopy (diagnostic and therapeutic procedures performed through the body's organs and vessels).

In traditional surgeries, a surgeon needs to make a large incision in order to operate. With MIS, the surgeon makes a few small holes -- usually less than 1/2 an inch. The surgeon then inserts specially designed, thin instruments and sophisticated video equipment to perform the operation through the smaller opening.

These port sites are the key to MIS. The benefits of MIS include less pain, quicker return to normal activities, and less tissue damage than with traditional surgeries.

Our Surgical Experts

Depending on the procedure, MIS can be performed with the surgeon manipulating the instruments by hand or with the surgeon directing robotic arms to perform the surgery. While the majority of MIS procedures at the University of Chicago Medicine involve hand manipulation, the introduction of robotic technology has allowed our surgeons to perform finer and more delicate maneuvers.

Our surgeons are experts in MIS -- all have received additional training in order to perform these highly technical procedures. Many of our surgeons are currently teaching these procedures.

Is MIS Right for You?

At the University of Chicago Medicine, minimally invasive procedures are used whenever possible. Some MIS procedures and surgeries may not be suitable for every patient. Your surgeon will discuss your personal options before any surgery.

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The University of Chicago Style of Surgery

It's all about you, helping you understand and helping you heal. If you've been told you need surgery, the physicians at the University of Chicago Medicine can help.
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