What is an

Artificial Disc Replacement?


One of the goals of Artificial Disc Replacement Surgery is to relieve the pain of a pinched nerve or discogenic pain in the spine. This is accomplished by replacing the disc with a special polyethylene implant. The implant helps maintain the height of the intervertebral disc and restores motion that the patient had lost because of the damaged disc.

In an Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement Surgery, the disc is inserted between two neck verterbrae. This is done after the old, compromised disc is removed while decompressing the spinal cord or nerve root. The artificial disc prevents the two verterbrae from pressing onto each other and are used in lieu of a bone graft, plates, and screws that are tused when performing a fusion following a disc removal.
Performed in the upper area of the spine to repair cervical herniated discs, a cervical disc replacement is chosen for patients who have not experienced enough improvement in symptoms from non-surgical treatments. This surgery provides exceptional relief and functionality for the patient, offers a better range of motion than a traditional fusion and is believed to aid in preventing further degeneration of the spine.

 

Artificial Disc Replacement Surgery

At the present time, the FDA will only approve of one artificial disc replacement surgery. If more than one disc is injured or compromised, an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion with plates may become the surgery of choice. Conditions such as bone spurs, arthritis, deformity and spinal instability are other contra-indications of an Artificial Disc Replacement.