MILD Procedure

MILD procedure Missouri City

If you suffer from lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) and find that you can’t stand or walk for long periods of time without experiencing severe pain, there’s a new treatment option that has provided patients with relief. MILD® is an attractive treatment option for patients who didn’t respond to conservative treatment options and who aren’t a candidate or prefer to avoid surgery. The Texas Pain Care team in the Sugar Land, Missouri City, and Houston areas are experts at offering the MILD® procedure to their patients suffering from LSS with a goal to help them increase their quality of life.

What is Lumbar Spinal Stenosis?

When a patient suffers from lumbar spinal stenosis, there is a narrowing of the spinal canal that causes nerve compression. This narrowing is most often due to wear-and-tear changes over the years due to arthritis, or could also be caused by a bulging disc, tumors, traumatic injuries, bone spurs, osteoarthritis or thick ligaments. This compression leads to mobility issues, as well as pain in the back and legs. 

More than 2 million people are diagnosed and treated with LSS every year. The majority of these patients are over the age of 50, as the likelihood of developing this condition increases with age (and subsequent use). 

What are the Symptoms of Lumbar Spinal Stenosis?

The majority of patients who suffer from lumbar spinal stenosis find that they cannot walk long distances or stand for long periods of time without experiencing severe pain. Additional symptoms generally include: 

Temporary relief can be found if the person bends or leans forward while sitting or standing, which “opens” the spinal canal and thereby reduces pressure on the nerves. This could be done with the help of a walker or a cane, or leaning over a shopping cart. 

What is mild®?

mild® stands for minimally invasive lumbar decompression and is a technique that restores space in the spinal canal. It addresses a major root cause of lumbar spinal stenosis by removing excess ligament tissue to restore space in the spinal canal. This technique is most often recommended if conservative methods, such as pain medication and physical therapy, haven’t provided the patient with needed relief. Also, for patients who want to avoid the risk of open spine surgery, or aren’t a candidate for surgery, this treatment option is a popular option for providing relief without the added risks of surgery. 

What are the Benefits of mild®?

The main benefit of the mild® procedure is that it offers patients a minimally-invasive, low risk method for treating the symptoms of lumbar spinal stenosis in the long term without the need for surgery. 

Patients who have taken advantage of the mild® treatment have been able to enjoy the following outcomes: 

While similar safety-wise to an epidural steroid injection, the mild® procedure offers more effective relief because it targets the compression of the spine itself, versus inflammation that a steroid injection typically treats. Both procedures offer a low risk, minimally-invasive treatment option that doesn’t utilize any implants or stitches, but the mild® procedure offers long-term results for treating lumbar spinal stenosis, while an epidural steroid injection offers temporary relief. 

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What Does the mild® Procedure Involve?

The procedure is performed in an out-patient setting, meaning the patient is able to return home the same day and enjoy a short recovery period. The procedure is performed using a local anesthetic and light sedation through a 1 cm. incision, which is about the size of a baby Aspirin. The pain management specialist uses a special sculpting tool that glides through a 5 mm-sized portal to go between the bones and scrapes out the thickened ligament and widens the spinal canal, both of which help to reduce nerve compression. 

The procedure does not require implants, stitches, steroids or opioids. Also, because the bony structure of the spine remains intact, the function of the spine is not compromised, which allows to resume normal activity within 24 hours after the procedure. Patients are encouraged to walk and participate in physical therapy efforts to continue to increase their mobility and function. 

Additionally, due to the fact that no major structural anatomy of the spine is altered, no future treatment options are eliminated, should they be needed. 

Am I a Candidate for mild®?

The best way to determine if you’re a candidate for mild® is to partner with a pain management specialist who is trained in lumbar spinal stenosis diagnosis and treatment. There are a few options that can treat lumbar spinal stenosis, and not all providers are trained in the mild® method. 

You might be a candidate if:

If you feel you might be a candidate for mild®, please schedule a consultation appointment with the Texas Pain Care team in the Sugar Land, Missouri City and Houston areas today. During the consultation, we will review your symptoms as well as your imaging (MRI and/or X-Rays) to determine whether mild® is right for you. Our goal is to always help our patients enjoy a high quality of life with no pain, all while utilizing the safest and most effective treatment possible. 

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