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Cervical Disc Replacement Indications in Portland, Oregon

What is Cervical Disc Replacement?

A cervical disc replacement is a surgery designed to remove a herniated disc in the neck and relieve pressure on nerves. After disc removal an artificial disc made of metal and polyethylene (similar to plastic) is used to allow motion while stabilizing the spine.

When is a Cervical Disc Replacement Indicated?

A cervical disc replacement is indicated when one, or possibly two, discs are degenerated or herniated and are identified as the likely cause of neck or arm pain. Patients must have minimal arthritis of the facet joints, no active infection, and no osteoporosis. The involved disc(s) must be between C3-4 and C6-7. The criteria for successful cervical disc replacement are more stringent than for anterior cervical discectomy and fusion.

What Are the Details of Cervical Disc Replacement?

Cervical disc replacement takes about 2 to 3 hours to perform. An incision is made across the front part of your neck, usually on the left side. The incision goes past your esophagus and trachea, and your spine is directly under this area. The entire disc is removed and then the disc replacement is put in its place. After surgery, you are usually somewhat hoarse, and there is some difficulty involved in swallowing. This is quite common. You can get up and around the day of surgery and will be in a soft collar.

What is the Postoperative Course for Cervical Disc Replacement?

We use a soft collar for immobilization for about 2 weeks after disc replacement. The collar can be removed anytime. Dr. Button recommends against driving for 1 – 2 weeks and no lifting greater than 15 pounds for one month. Further restrictions can be found in Dr. Button’s aftercare instructions.

Dr. Button is experienced in cervical disc replacement and if you would like to schedule an appointment to discuss this or other procedures, click here.

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