The initial conservative treatment before undergoing a cervical disc disease typically involves physical therapy, medications, and occasionally spinal injection procedures. If the symptoms persist for more than 6-12 weeks, surgical treatment can be considered. However, the most common and traditional operation for symptomatic cervical disc disease involves an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion surgery.
Who is a candidate for cervical disc replacement surgery?
Cervical disc replacement is used to treat symptomatic cervical disc disease that has failed to improve with alternative care. In most cases, disc replacement can be used instead of an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion, but there are situations where arthroplasty is not an option.
Cervical disc replacement is performed with the patient under general anaesthesia. Patients are positioned face up in the operating room and a one to two inch (3-5cm) horizontal incision is made. The damaged disc is then exposed and removed.
At Same Day Spine, the surgeon performs this minimally disruptive procedure to relieve the painful symptoms from a pinched nerve in the neck. The procedure is performed through a less than 1 inch incision. With the aid of a high powered medical microscope, the damaged spinal disc is replaced with a new artificial disc using the latest FDA approved disc replacement technologies.
After preparing the disc space, the disc replacement device is sized and carefully placed into position between the vertebrae. The artificial disc is designed to glide and rotate just like a normal healthy disc. The procedure is typically completed within 60 minutes and because no muscles and very little bone are cut during the procedure, scarring is minimized and the patient is able to leave the hospital the same day.
You may experience immobilization in a cervical collar for up to a week . The pain from the procedure usually improves within two to three days. Nerve symptoms such as pain, numbness, and weakness that are typically associated with the cervical disc disease are often dramatically improved within hours of the surgery, but in some cases, it can take weeks or even months to recover.
Potential Benefits of a Cervical Artificial Disc vs. a Fusion
Unlike a fusion procedure, the artificial disc surgery does not have the potential complications associated with taking a bone graft from the hip nor the theoretical risk of infection transmission from using a cadaveric bone graft. The length and type of activity restrictions following surgery are also comparatively less with disc replacement.
Sameday Spine Surgery is a centre of excellence for patients with a wide range of spinal disorders/conditions. Sameday Spine Surgery specializes in minimally invasive treatments of the spine, using latest cutting edge technologies, such as stem cells, Laser Treatment, artificial discs, spinal cord stimulators, Minimally Invasive Treatment, etc for spinal treatments.
Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement vs. a Fusion