Patients who suffer from cervical pain with radiation the upper extremities typically respond well to non-surgical treatments. These include NSAIDs, wearing a soft cervical collar while sleeping, Physical Therapy and epidural steroid injections or facet blocks. If non-surgical treatments do not correct the issue, surgical correction may become necessary.
Surgical treatments options include Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF) and Cervical Disc Replacement (Cervical Arthroplasty). Patients without advanced arthritic or degenerative changes may be a candidate for Cervical Disc Replacement. The maintenance of cervical motion, is the primary advantage of Cervical Arthroplasty.
This procedure is performed under general anesthesia – often as an out-patient procedure. Utilizing a microscopic surgical approach, the damaged cervical disc is exposed and removed and the spinal cord and pinched nerves are decompressed. The disc replacement device is then carefully sized and expertly positioned between cervical vertebrae. After confirming proper anatomical balance with x-ray, the incision is closed.
Patients are typically discharged home the same day for 1 level cervical disc replacements. Nerve pain symptoms typically begin to improve within a few hours of surgery – and continues over the next few months.