Cervical Disc Replacement Surgery in India
Your cervical spine is made up of the 7 bones, called cervical vertebrae, stacked on top of each other forming the neck area. The cervical disks are the cushions that lie between the cervical vertebrae. They act as shock absorbers to allow your neck to move freely.
Your cervical spine also forms a protective tunnel for the upper part of your spinal cord to pass through. This part of your spinal cord contains the spinal nerves that supply your upper body with sensation and movement.
When the space between your vertebrae becomes too narrow, part of your vertebrae or your cervical disk can press on your spinal cord or spinal nerves, causing you pain, numbness, or weakness. When these symptoms do not respond to nonsurgical types of treatment, disk surgery may be recommended.
Cervical disk replacement surgery involves removing a diseased cervical disk and replacing it with an artificial disk. Before this procedure was available, the affected disk was removed and the vertebrae above and below were fused together to prevent motion
The use of an artificial disk to replace your natural cervical disk is a new type of treatment that has recently been approved by the FDA. Disk replacement surgery may have the advantage of allowing more movement and creating less stress on your remaining vertebrae than traditional cervical disk surgery.
Why is Cervical Disk Replacement Surgery needed?
Loss of space between your cervical vertebrae from cervical disk degeneration, or wear and tear, is common. Cervical disks begin to collapse and bulge with age; this happens to most people by age 60. But health care providers don’t know why some people have more symptoms from cervical disk degeneration than others.
Symptoms may include:
- Neck pain
- Neck stiffness
- Pain that travels down into your shoulders or into your arms
- Weakness of your shoulders, arms, hands, or legs
- Numbness or “pins and needles” feeling in your arms
Benefits of Cervical Disk Replacement Surgery
- Disc replacement improves function after surgery.
- Motion preservation reduces stress on the spine.
- Minimally invasive surgery offers a faster recovery.
- Artificial disc surgery has lesser chances of requiring a revision surgery, compared to spinal fusion surgery. Normal neck motion can be maintained.
- Unlike the spinal fusion surgery the adjacent spinal discs in case of cervical disc replacement don’t have to bear the extra stress.
- Eliminates the need for a painful bone graft.
- Recovery time is quicker compared to the fusion surgery.
- Lesser number of patients need a hard collar following the cervical Disc Replacement surgery.
The Procedure of Cervical Disk Replacement Surgery
The standard method used in a Cervical disc replacement surgery is an anterior (from the front) approach to the cervical spine. This surgical approach is the same as that presently used for a discectomy and fusion operation. The affected disc is completely removed including any impinging disc fragments or osteophytes (bone spurs).
This is important because when a disc becomes worn out, it will typically shrink in its height, which can also contribute to the pinching on the nerves in the neck. At this point, using x-rays or fluoroscopy, the artificial disc device is implanted into the prepared disc space.
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