Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement

Cervical disc arthroplasty is the surgical removal of a herniated or degenerative cervical disc and the replacement of the disc with a motion-preserving artificial disc implant. The surgery is designed to relieve symptoms associated with a disc herniation or degenerative disc and also to preserve normal motion at the operative level.

Artificial Disc Replacement was designed as an alternative to a more traditional approach that involves fusion of the herniated disc segment.

Prospective randomized surgery has shown to provide similar results to fusion surgery; however, long-term follow-up does not clearly demonstrate a decrease in the adjacent-level disc herniations that are more common with fusion surgery.

  • Anterior refers to the approach of surgery which is in the front of the neck.
  • Cervical refers to the position on the spine, which is in the neck region.
  • Artificial disc refers to a mechanical implant designed to allow for normal motion between two vertebrae.

Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement Recovery

After surgery, the majority of people can resume regular activities like driving and light work within a week. Usually, it takes 6 to 12 weeks for a full recovery before heavier lifting and more strenuous activities can be resumed. If there was considerable nerve compression before surgery, recovery in the nerve may not finish for up to one or two years.

The little incision in the front of the neck and the locations within the neck where the surgery was performed account for a large portion of the postoperative pain experienced. Because the procedure may have irritated the esophagus and other soft tissues, some people may experience discomfort or difficulty speaking or swallowing. Within a few days or weeks, this pain normally gets much better. Pain or other consequences could, in extremely rare circumstances, continue longer or become permanent.

Cervical Artificial Disc Replacement Complications

Disk replacement surgery is a largely risk-free technique, despite the fact that all surgeries include some risk. You must sign a consent form outlining the risks and advantages of the procedure before it is performed.

Since disk replacement is a relatively new technique for operating on the spine, little is known about its potential long-term hazards and results. Compare the advantages and disadvantages of disk replacement surgery to more conventional forms of cervical spine surgery with your surgeon.