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Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery Specialist

George Kakoulides, MD -  - Board Certified Neurosurgeon

George Kakoulides, MD

Board Certified Neurosurgeon located in West Islip, Huntington, Smithtown, NY, & Long Island, NY

When you have ongoing back or neck pain despite conservative medical care, it may be time to talk with George Kakoulides, MD, about minimally invasive spine surgery. As a board-certified neurosurgeon, Dr. Kakoulides is recognized for his exceptional surgical skills and his use of today’s most advanced technology to treat a vast range of spinal conditions. To learn if you’re a good candidate for a minimally invasive procedure, call one of the offices in West Islip, Smithtown, and Huntington, New York, at 631-358-2589 or schedule an appointment online.

Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery

What is minimally invasive spine surgery?

Minimally invasive spine surgery is performed using a few small incisions rather than one long incision. During minimally invasive procedures, Dr. Kakoulides uses specialized surgical instruments inserted through narrow tubes that easily fit through the small incisions.

Small incisions cause significantly less trauma compared with open surgery. As a result, you experience:

  • Less bleeding during surgery
  • Lower risk of complications
  • Less pain after surgery
  • Faster recovery

Following minimally invasive spine surgery, most patients recover and return to their normal activities more quickly than after open surgery.

When might I need minimally invasive spine surgery?

Many painful spine conditions improve with minimally invasive spine surgery to repair the underlying problem, including:

  • Herniated discs
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Facet joint arthritis
  • Spinal tumors
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Scoliosis
  • Spinal fractures
  • Adjacent segment disease

While Dr. Kakoulides can treat many spine disorders with minimally invasive techniques, this type of surgery isn’t always the best choice for all patients. He carefully reviews your symptoms and diagnostic imaging to determine if your unique spinal condition is a good match for minimally invasive surgery.

What techniques are used during minimally invasive spine surgery?

These are only a few examples of the many techniques and procedures Dr. Kakoulides performs:

Tubular surgery

Dr. Kakoulides uses a series of dilators to gently stretch muscles and tissues, creating an opening that’s just large enough to insert the tube through which your surgery is performed. This technique has the great benefit of preserving your muscles, as Dr. Kakoulides accesses the surgical site without cutting through the tissues.

Lateral transpsoas interbody fusion

A lateral approach means that Dr. Kakoulides accesses the spine from the side rather than the front or back. As a result, he avoids cutting through multiple ligaments and muscles. 

Dr. Kakoulides often performs a lateral transpsoas interbody fusion to decompress nerves and stabilize the spine in patients with spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, or adjacent segment disease.

Percutaneous fusion

The percutaneous technique allows Dr. Kakoulides to implant specialized instruments across several vertebrae using a few small incisions. The instruments he inserts are used to fuse vertebrae and stabilize the spine.


This minimally invasive procedure repairs vertebral compression fractures by inserting a needle into the vertebra, using a balloon to restore the bone’s height, and then injecting bone cement to rebuild the bone and stabilize the spine.

To learn if you’re a good candidate for minimally invasive spine surgery, call George Kakoulides, MD, or book an appointment online.