Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement
Artificial disc replacement provides an alternative solution to fusion when treating damaged discs. This procedure has been developed to maintain motion and decrease stress on the surrounding discs.
The specific advantages of the artificial disc replacement is to maintain the motion, maximize function, and minimize the long-term risks to the discs above and below this level.
- Fusion Sparing Surgery
- Reduces Stress on Adjacent Spinal discs
- 90% Success Rate in Alleviating Pain
- Reduced Blood Loss
- Minimal Incision and Scarring
- Faster Return to Work
What Are the Indications For Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement?
- Significant Neck Pain That Radiates Into The Arms
- At Least 6 Weeks Of Nonsurgical Treatment
- Only One Or Two Levels Of The Neck Affected
- Suitable General Health for Safe Anesthesia
How Is The Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement Performed?
A 3 cm incision is made in the front of the neck and an approach is made to the vertebral bones of the cervical spine. Damaged disc and any bone spurs pressing on the spinal cord or nerves are decompressed and removed. Once the disc is prepared, a durable plastic and metal device that moves in a similar fashion to the natural disc is inserted into the disc space. The procedure and device allows Dr. Rodriguez to remove the pain-generating disc and take the pressure off the spinal cord and the nerves while maintaining a motion similar to the original disc.
What Is The Recovery After Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement?
Generally, patients are kept overnight for observation and pain control with medicine in their veins. However, one could go home the same day if they are recovered from anesthesia and their pain is well controlled with pain pills. Most patients will wear a soft collar for 2 weeks. Patients may return to light duty work as early as 2 weeks (if necessary). Dr. Rodriguez typically recommends that patients return to light duty jobs by 6 weeks and heavy lifting positions by 3-6 months.
What Are The Risks of Cervical Artificial Disk Replacement?
The cervical artificial disc replacement surgery, like any other surgical procedure, has certain potential risks and complications associated with it. Dr. Rodriguez will discuss all potential risks of surgery and answers all of your concerns prior to any decision to move forward with surgery.
Risks and complications that are possible with cervical artificial disc replacement surgery are minimal and include but are not limited to:
- Post-Surgical Infection
- Swallowing Problems
- Nerve Damage
Dr. Rodriguez uses nerve monitoring during surgery to minimize risks to the spinal cord, vocal cords and nerves.