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Surgery for a herniated disc in the neck? You’ve got options!

January 15, 2019 in News, Article, Ask the Expert, Neck Pain, Operative Care,
Posted by Ehsan Jazini


Herniated discs in the neck are often associated with pain and weakness/numbness trailing down the neck, shoulder, and even into the arms. This is a result of nerve compression along the spinal cord and can lead to long-term damage if not managed successfully. If you’ve tried conservative treatment options like rest and physical therapy, spine surgery may be the best solution.   

Whether you just found out you need spine surgery, or you’ve been researching for a while, you’ve got options when it comes to treating your herniated disc!

1. Spinal fusion

In some instances, a herniated disc not only compresses the nerve but can leave the spine unstable. For this reason, spinal fusions have been the traditional gold standard treatment for decompressing the spinal cord, while also creating long term stability. This procedure has been improved with the use of 3D printing to produce stronger fusion implants. 

2. Artificial disc replacement

Motion preservation technology has steadily advanced over the last 10 years, allowing surgeons to relieve pressure off the nerves while preserving motion in the neck. Artificial disc replacements have also shown to reduce the risk of degeneration in nearby discs and mitigates the need for future surgeries.

3. Hybrid procedure

Hybrid procedures combine the best of both worlds into one surgery -- stability from a spinal fusion and motion preservation from an artificial disc. When appropriate, a hybrid cervical spine fusion with artificial disc replacement may be recommended to obtain stability at one level in the neck while preserving motion at another.  

Spine surgery recommendations should be entirely dependent on your individual diagnosis and tailored to your recovery goals. The specialists at Virginia Spine Institute will consider your individual goals before recommending a personalized care plan. 

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