What is a Cervical Disc Replacement?
Instead of performing a fusion, cervical disc replacements make use of implants in place of damaged discs. Cervical discs are specifically located in your upper spine and can degrade over time. This is a solid surgical option when nonsurgical treatments fail.
Why is a Cervical Disc Replacement Performed?
There are various benefits of this type of treatment. First, the surgery is relatively minor and thus unlikely to bring any complications. As well as this, full recovery is also rapid and will be over within about six months.
Another great benefit is that unlike other replacement surgeries such as disc replacement, there is no evidence to suggest that the disc will wear away over time.
How is a Cervical Disc Replacement Performed?
The treatment itself is performed under anesthesia and may take several hours. To perform the surgery, a surgeon will start by creating an opening in either the front or the side of your neck.
This will provide the space they need to access the disc and then remove it. Once the disc has been removed, the implant will be put in place.
What Should I Expect After a Cervical Disc Replacement?
Once the surgery is complete, you can expect one or two nights in the hospital. But recovery will start almost immediately, with staff helping you get out of bed and eventually walk around on your own.
We will also show you how to avoid putting stress on your neck. There may be temporary restrictions on what you can carry or how far you bend. Results of the surgery can be seen even hours after with lower levels of pain, weakness, and numbness. After one week, you will be able to return to work and from six weeks, you will be back to normal with lower levels of discomfort.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cervical Disc Replacement
1. Who is an ideal candidate for cervical disc replacement?
This will be suitable for anyone who is suffering from cervical disc disease which has not improved through nonsurgical options including medication and physical therapy. Most patients will usually be older and will have been suffering from pain or discomfort for years.