Category: Spine Surgery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: December 28, 2017
If you are dealing with an issue with one of your spinal discs and conservative care options aren’t providing relief, surgery may be the best route for you. When it comes to disc surgery, most patients are given two options – artificial disc replacement and spinal fusion. Today, we’re going to take a closer look at the advantages of artificial disc replacement.
Artificial Disc Replacement
An artificial disc replacement involves removing the damaged disc an inserting a disc prosthesis that mimics that natural movements of a healthy spinal disc. These devices are often used in cases where the patient is suffering from a painful case of degenerative disc disease, or due to repeated disc herniations. Artificial disc replacement is not for everyone. Patients whose bones have been severely weakened due to aging or osteoporosis may not be able to undergo the operation.
If you are a candidate for artificial disc surgery, here are three reasons why you may prefer the operation to a traditional spinal fusion operation.
- Increased Range of Motion and Flexibility After Surgery – An artificial disc or Mobi-C device is preferred over a spinal fusion operation because it allows the patient to have much more range of motion and flexibility in their spine. A spinal fusion prevents disc slippage by fusing two vertebrae together, which inhibits some movements and flexibility. This is not an issue with artificial disc replacement, because each vertebral disc can move and shift as necessary without being fused to another vertebrae.
- Reduced Damage To Nearby Discs – Since the new artificial disc will be mimicking the actions of a healthy disc, it will inherently take some pressure off the nearby discs who were compensating for it being out of position prior to surgery. There is also less wear and tear on the adjacent discs, since you’re not fusing the shifted vertebrae onto one of the other vertebral sections.
- Faster Recovery Time – An artificial disc replacement option is generally less invasive than a fusion operation, which means reduced recovery time for the patient. Not only is recovery time shortened, but it is usually easier and less painful than recovery after spinal fusion (although both post-op care plans involve pain management strategies to reduce discomfort as much as possible).
Minnesota Disc Replacement Surgeon
So if your spinal discs are causing you a lot of pain and non-operative methods aren’t helping, talk to your doctor about your surgery options. Dr. Sinicropi has performed artificial disc replacement on countless patients, and he’d be more than happy to walk you through the procedure and answer any questions you might have. For more information, reach out to his office today.