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Your Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement Guideline

By Expert Author: Sameday Spineinstitute

Our cervical spine is made up of the seven bones, called cervical vertebrae. They are stacked on top of each other in your neck area. The cushion that lie between the cervical vertebrae are your cervical disks. They act as shock absorbers and enable your neck to move freely.

When is cervical disk replacement surgery done?

Artificial cervical disc replacement surgery involves removing a diseased cervical disk and replacing it with an artificial disk. It is done when the gap between your vertebrae narrows down and part of your vertebrae or your cervical disk presses against your spinal cord or spinal nerves, causing you pain, numbness, or weakness. If symptoms persists inspite of nonsurgical intervention, disk surgery may be recommended.

An artificial disc is used to replace your natural cervical disk.This new type of treatment is FDA acclaimed. The traditional artificial cervical disc replacement, the diseased disk is removed and the cervical vertebrae above and below the disk may be fused together. Disk replacement surgery has the benefit for allowing free movement and lesser stress on your vertebrae as compared to cervical disk surgery.

An artificial disc surgery may be done instead of an anterior cervical discectomy and fusion.

Potential benefits

1. Maintaining normal neck motion

2. Reducing degeneration of adjacent segments of the cervical spine

3. Eliminating the need for a bone graft

4. Early postoperative neck motion

5. Faster return to normal activity

Reasons for the procedure

Loss of space between your cervical vertebrae from cervical disk degeneration, or wear and tear.

Age Factor: People at the age 60 are most prone. However, doctors are not able to find out why some people have more symptoms from cervical disk degeneration than others.

Symptoms:

1. Neck pain

2. Neck stiffness

3. Headache

4. Pain that travels down into your shoulders or into your arms

5. Weakness of your shoulders, arms, hands, or legs

6. "Pins and needles" or numbness in your arms

Before the procedure

Talk to your surgeon before the surgery and tell him about ant prior medics you are on , including herbal supplements and over-the-counter medications. Aspirin or similar medicines will be prohibited as they make your blood thin, which may contribute to increased bleeding.

1. Tell your surgeon about any history of reaction to general anesthesia.

2. You may be asked not to stop smoking before surgery but also after it for a short period.

3. You may have to stop eating and drinking before the surgery. It's common to have nothing to eat or drink after midnight on the night before the procedure.

4. Confirm with your surgeon if you can take your regular medications with a small sip of water on the day of the procedure.

During the procedure

Just before the procedure starts you will have an intravenous line (IV) started so you can receive fluids and medications to make you relaxed and sleepy. This procedure is usually done under general anesthesia (you are asleep). Medication may be given through the IV to put you to sleep and a tube may be inserted in your throat to protect your airway and supplement your breathing. The actual procedure may last a few hours. This is what may happen once the procedure begins:

1. Monitors are placed to check your heart, blood pressure, and oxygen level.

2. The area of your neck where the incision will be made is cleaned with a special solution to kill germs on the skin.

3. A one- to two-inch incision (surgical cut) is made on the side or front of your neck.

4. The important structures of the neck are carefully moved to the side until the surgeon can see the bones of the vertebrae and the cervical disk.

5. The cervical disk that is being replaced is removed.

6. The artificial disk is placed into the empty disk space.

7. The incision is closed using absorbable sutures (stitches) under the skin. The skin is then carefully closed with sutures that minimize any scarring.

8. A small dressing is applied over the incision, a rigid or soft neck collar may be put on your neck, and you will be taken to the recovery area.

After the procedure

In the recovery area, you will be observed until you recover from the anesthesia. Pain after disk replacement surgery is normal and you may be given pain medication in the recovery area.

Most people will need to spend a day or two in the hospital. This is what may happen during your hospital stay:

1. Intravenous fluids may be continued until you can drink fluids well by mouth.

2. Once you are able to drink normally, you will be able to start eating your normal diet.

3. You'll continue to take pain medication if you need it.

4. Your nurses will check your dressing and help you to get out of bed and go to the bathroom.

5. You may be given a support collar to wear in the hospital.

6. You will be encouraged to get out of bed and move around as soon as you are able to.

Recovery and rehabilitation at home may be a little different for each person, but in general, here's what you might expect:

1. You may need to continue wearing a soft or rigid neck support.

2. You will be able to eat your normal diet.

3. You may need to return to your surgeon to have sutures removed.

4. You will gradually start returning to normal activities. You should ask your surgeon about any activity restrictions and when you can take a regular shower or bath.

5. You may start physical therapy after a few weeks.

6. You should be able to return to full activities by four to six weeks.

You should call your surgeon if you have any of these problems:

1. Fever

2. Headache

3. Bleeding, redness, swelling, or discharge from your incision site

4. Pain that does not respond to pain medication

5. Numbness or weakness

6. Difficulty swallowing

7. Voice change or hoarseness

8. Difficulty breathing


In the US clinical study, there were a number of adverse events. Some of the most common were trauma, difficulty swallowing, impairment of speech, and infection. There may be other risks associated with treatment using the Prestige device. Although many of the major risks are listed on this website, a more comprehensive list is provided in the physician's package insert for the product. Please consult your doctor for more information and an explanation of these risks.

Author Bio:

The Author is a research writer and provides complete information on Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement and Cervical Disc Replacement . For more information please visit http://www.samedayspineinstitute.com

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