Intervertebral discs are the spongy cushions that divide the spinal vertebrae to absorb shock, maintain spinal stability, and permit spinal mobility. Sadly, these discs are susceptible to injury and disease. If you are suffering persistent neck or back pain, Dr. Jocelyn Idema and Steel City Spine and Orthopedic Center staff can determine if you have a damaged disc. Often, your doctor might recommend medication, injections, or physical therapy to alleviate your discomfort. Nonetheless, in some instances, a disc replacement may be the best course of action. Here are six things you should know before undergoing artificial disk replacement Pittsburgh, PA.
It Resembles A Healthy Disc
Technology has evolved so that the artificial disc no longer serves as a placeholder disc. Modern artificial discs are meant to imitate the functionality of a healthy disc, allowing you to keep greater flexibility and mobility at the disc’s location. A fusion operation will restrict motion at the operative site.
You Could Carry It Out Through Minimally Invasive Methods
Your surgeon must not create a major incision to place the artificial disc in your spine or neck. Based on the degree and location of the damage, your surgeon could be able to execute the operation using laparoscopic procedures, resulting in minimal tissue damage.
They Are Exceptionally Sturdy
Contemporary spinal implants are highly sturdy, and it is extremely uncommon that a patient will require a second operation to replace a degenerated or fractured artificial disc. The spinal discs’ lifespan is estimated to be between 35 and 70 years, implying you will probably never have to change the implant.
It Might Not Eradicate Your Back Discomfort
Though artificial disk replacement surgery has a good success rate, it does not guarantee to eliminate back discomfort. You might continue to feel discomfort in the location where the disc was extracted or elsewhere in your back. Therefore, asking your specialist for an accurate assessment of how much relief you will feel after surgery is essential.
Not Everybody Is A Good Candidate for The Procedure
An artificial disk replacement cannot be appropriate if you have a pre-existing health condition that prevents your body from withstanding anesthesia or surgery. Additional factors that could impact your candidacy include:
- Low Bone Density; patients with serious osteoporosis
- Arthritic joints; The spine’s facet joints must have minimal or no arthritic alterations.
- Pre-existing Spinal Instability; spine subluxation resulting from a disorder such as spondylolisthesis or an unusual spinal curvature resulting from a condition such as scoliosis.
Recovery Is More Rapid
Although everybody recovers at a different rate, most patients who receive a disc replacement procedure could anticipate a quicker recovery than if they underwent a fusion procedure. The average time required to return to the field following a fusion treatment is six months, while artificial disc replacement reduces this period to approximately three months.
Disc damage causes excruciating pain, tingling, burning sensations, and sometimes numbness. Do not allow persistent back pain to dictate your life. Schedule a consultation at Steel City Spine and Orthopedic Center to determine if disc replacement suits you. Call the Washington, McKees Rocks, and Pittsburgh, PA, offices, or use the online booking tool to arrange an appointment with Dr. Idema today.