In the world of spinal care, our team of professionals works hard to supply patients with options that are effective for long-lasting pain relief. Among our top technologies is the advanced Cervical Disc Replacement treatment.
In this blog, we’ll look at the following:
- Understanding the surgery
- The immediate recovery phase
- Early rehabilitation strategies
- Long-term care and lifestyle adjustments
- Frequently asked questions
Understanding the Surgery
The cervical spine disc comprises the vertebrae and intervertebral discs in the body. If degeneration or damage occurs on these discs, an artificial disc replacement surgery can be an effective intervention. A cervical disc replacement surgery restores function and strength to your vertebrae by surgically replacing the damaged disc with a prosthetic implant.
What Is The Success Rate Of Disc Replacement Surgery?
Disc replacement surgery success rates are as high as 87%. How successful the surgery is will depend on the patient, the severity and complexity of their problem, and how well they follow their post-treatment recovery regimen.
The Immediate Recovery Phase
Once your procedure is done, you’ll move into the recovery phase of treatment. During this time, your consistency with your recovery regimen is vital to treatment success.
What to Expect in the First Few Days
The first few days following your treatment, you may experience some soreness as your body adjusts, including neck discomfort and stiffness. Likewise, you’ll likely go home the same day of the procedure, but in some cases, your doctor may ask you to stay at the hospital for 1 or 2 days after surgery.
This spine surgery, in particular, doesn’t require patients to wear a cervical collar, also called a soft neck collar, post-op because of the cervical artificial disc’s ability to restore and preserve motion to your neck.
Early Rehabilitation Strategies
Rehabilitation after surgery is as much your responsibility as it is your doctor and therapists, if not more. We say this because you must stay on top of your regimen, take medication for pain, and give your body the time it needs to heal. Your doctor will provide you with in-depth instructions on at-home recovery to ensure the optimal outcome of your procedure.
Physical Therapy and Exercises Post-Surgery
You’ll be given at-home stretches and exercises to do yourself, or you’ll need to combine at-home work with formal physical therapy. Physical therapy starts at around 2-weeks after surgery. During the first two weeks, avoid lifting anything heavier than 10 pounds within the first couple of weeks.
Daily cardio-based exercises allow your body to build up tolerance and strengthen your spine. Most people return to work and resume their daily activities as usual within a week or two.
Managing Pain and Discomfort
Along with doing daily stretches and exercises to expand your spine’s mobility, you’ll also be prescribed medication to help with any pain. It’s common for patients to experience some soreness and stiffness in their neck and spine following the procedure. Pain medication aids in alleviating the discomfort as your body heals naturally.
Monitoring and Managing Complications
As you continue seeing your doctor post-opt, they can monitor your healing progress and be alerted of any complications or concerns you’re experiencing. Be aware of what symptoms to bring up at scheduled appointments and which require immediate attention.
Typical Symptoms Include:
- Moderate pain, numbness, or weakness at the front of the neck
- Difficulty swallowing
- Voice hoarseness
If you experience any of these symptoms persistently or severely, contact your doctor immediately.
Additional Serious Symptoms
- Bleeding, redness, swelling, or discharge from the incision site
- Post-operative pain that does not respond to pain medication
- Difficulty breathing
- Persistent pins and needles
Long-Term Care and Lifestyle Adjustments
Cervical disc replacement aims to improve and expand your abilities, not limit them. You can return to the life you once had with the reduction of cervical pain.
The Importance of Ongoing Medical Supervision
Even after recovery, you must continue seeing your doctor for regular checkups to make sure your replacement is still working as it should. Whether it’s a week after cervical disc replacement or one year, all concerns that arise should be brought to your doctor to avoid complications from progressing.
Frequently Asked Questions
How serious is cervical disc replacement?
Cervical disc replacement involves the removal of a damaged disc and the placement of an artificial one. While this may sound major, the procedure only takes a few hours, and it’s minimally invasive enough that many patients go home the same day of surgery.
How do you qualify for disc replacement?
Patients who qualify for disc replacement,
– Have seen no significant improvement with non-surgical solutions
– Are between 18-60 years of age
– Have a diagnosis of degenerative disc disease
– Experience neck/arm pain due to cervical disc degeneration
Does insurance cover this procedure?
Yes. Our offices accept most major insurances, which can be found here.