Cervical Disc Surgery
Cervical Disc Surgery
In recent years, the development of cervical disc surgery has taken a leap. This is partly because of the growth of medical science, but also because there have been more reported cases of back-related problems. This bodes both bad and good news for cervical herniated disc patients. On the one hand, it is reassuring to know that there are more than a few medical solutions available to help treat back problems and its associated complications; on the other hand, the continued rise in cervical herniated disc cases means that current lifestyle choices makes us pre-disposed to suffering from back problems and this is certainly something that we should all be concerned about.
In general, however, the use of cervical disc surgery to address the problem is a welcome development for both doctors and patients alike. The most famous case of cervical disc surgery in professional sports is that of Payton Manning, former quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts, who had to undergo numerous operations to treat problems in his back.
The primary danger with cervical herniated disc is that it has been proven to occur spontaneously especially between the ages of 30 and 50 years old even if there are no accidents or trauma involved. The discs in the upper back or neck, particularly those from C7-T1 to C6-C7, begin to bulge, and when this happens they can touch a nerve. This leads to pain or general weakness in various areas including the neck, shoulder and arm. Over time, the herniated disc worsens causing more pain. If left unattended, the arm can become paralyzed as the nerve loses full functionality.
Cervical disc surgery aims to resolve the issue normally by extracting the bulging disc in the back. First, doctors run a series of tests to identify the exact disc that is herniated. Afterwards, doctors try to determine the best possible manner of attacking the problem. In some cases, removal of the disc is not necessary. In others, there is no other option but to take it out completely and to allow the remaining discs to fuse via a variety of options.
Recent developments in medical science allow doctors to quickly and effectively perform surgical procedures with minimal fanfare. In the case of laparoscopic cervical disc surgery, doctors make very small incisions so the cut can heal in a relatively short period.
The advent of laser-aided surgery has also increased the precision of cutting while reducing bleeding. Artificial cement-like agents can now be used to fuse the remaining discs faster. Consequently, better understanding of biomechanics has enhanced the way therapies and rehab sessions are done allowing patients to recover in a few months’ time.
Of course, all these developments in medical science do not take away the prevalence of cervical herniated disc as a medical condition. The continuing uptrend in cases is still worrisome and highlights the need for early reporting whenever you or a family member begins feeling recurring arm pain. Thankfully, we can rely on cervical disc surgery to see us through and allow us to recover; and perhaps in that, we can be confident. Now if we can only make prevention treatments of cervical herniated disc just as easy and readily available.
The good news is that in most cases cervical disc surgery will not be necessary. If care is given not to further damage the problem disc, it will usually respond favourable to non-invasive treatments.