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Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement

Disease Overview

Disc degeneration reduces the height of the Disc and may cause a Herniated Disc. The vertebrae of the backbone are cushioned by intervertebral Discs that act as shock-absorbers and allow frictionless movement of your back. It is made up of a soft gel-like center called the nucleus pulposus that is surrounded by a tough outer ring of annulus fibrosus. A herniated Disk is a condition in which the nucleus pulposus bulges out through the damaged or broken annulus fibrosus. Herniated Disk is also called bulging Disk, ruptured Disk or slipped Disk. Disk herniation causes compression of the spinal cord and/or spinal nerves. Spinal cord compression can cause pain in the arm and legs. In rare cases, it can lead to permanent damage and even paralysis.

What is Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement?

Artificial cervical Disc replacement is a spine surgery to replace a degenerated (deteriorated) Disc in the neck with an artificial Disc. The artificial Disc, like the natural healthy Disc, is used to replace the degenerated Disc. It restores the height between the two cervical vertebrae, enlarging the neural foramen (nerve passageway in the spine) and relieving the pressure on the spinal nerves. This stabilizes the cervical spine and restores normal mobility of the neck.

How is Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement Performed?

For the procedure, the cervical spine is approached through an incision in the front of the neck. The affected Disk is identified with the help of imaging studies and removed. The artificial Disk is then placed precisely in the Disc space between the vertebrae. After checking the range of motion of the neck and confirming the proper fit of the artificial Disc, the incision is sutured closed. 

Risks and Complications of Artificial Cervical Disc Replacement 

As with any surgery, artificial cervical Disc replacement may be associated with certain complications such as infection, bleeding and nerve injury causing temporary hoarseness of the voice and difficulty in swallowing.

  • University of Notre Dame
  • Saint Joseph Health System
  • Beacon Health System
  •  American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • The American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopedics
  • American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons
  • American Board of Medical Specialties
  • American Board of Medical Specialties
  • American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery
  • American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society
  • American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
  • North American Spine Society
  • American Society for Surgery of the Hand
  • American Academy of Physician Assistants
  • Zimmer Biomet
  • Stryker Corporation
  • Arthrex
  • Breg
  • Smith+Nephew
  • DePuy Synthes