Experts in Minimally Invasive Surgery 

Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) has redefined 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 existing openings). 

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.

Depending on the procedure, MIS can be performed with the surgeon manipulating the instruments by hand or with the surgeon directing robotic arms. 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 and have all received additional training in order to perform these highly technical procedures. Additionally, many of our surgeons are currently teaching these procedures to others.

By using MIS techniques, UChicago Medicine offers our patients many benefits over traditional surgeries.

Benefits of MIS

  • Less pain: Studies have shown that patients undergoing MIS procedures report less post-operative pain and discomfort and require smaller doses of pain relievers than patients undergoing traditional surgeries.
  • Shorter hospital stay: Patients who undergo MIS procedures are usually able to go home from the hospital sooner, and, in many cases, the patient is able to return to normal activities and work more quickly.
  • Less scarring: MIS procedures require smaller incisions, which means smaller, less noticeable scars.
  • Less injury to tissue; Most traditional surgeries require a long incision that  is made through muscle. But muscle needs a significant time to heal after surgery. Because there are no long incisions in MIS, surgeons often do not have to cut through muscles to complete the procedure, leading to less tissue damage and quicker recovery.
  • Higher accuracy rate: Because MIS procedures use video-assisted equipment, the surgeon has better visualization and magnification of internal organs and structure. For patients, this translates into an accurate and definitive procedure.

Is MIS Right for You?

At UChicago 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.

Minimally Invasive Surgery Specialties

Our world-renowned surgeons are experts in a variety of minimally invasive techniques. Learn more about the innovative treatment options we offer at the UChicago Medicine.