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If you suffer from severe neck and back pain that hasn’t been helped with traditional treatment methods like physical therapy and epidural injections, you may be a good candidate for a cervical disc replacement! According to Coordinated Health Spine Surgeon Vito Loguidice, M.D. a cervical disc replacement works best on those who are between the ages of 21 to 67 and has chronic neck pain, arm pain, numbness, tingling, weakness and headaches and has a diagnosis of cervical disc herniations or cervical spinal stenosis.
Dr. Luguidice says the disc replacement procedure is initially similar to a cervical fusion. “You make an incision in the front of the neck and take out the entire disc and replacement with an artificial disc,” he says.
There are currently six disc replacement parts approved by the FDA and Dr. Loguidice uses the newest device, the Mobi-C. Dr. Loguidice says he favors the Mobi-C for several reasons. “It is the only one that is approved for a two level replacement, which means it maintains movement. It’s also easier to insert than the standard disc replacements and it doesn’t require you to chisel the bone or put any screws in the bone to hold it in place,” he says.
The procedure can be done on an outpatient basis, but Dr. Loguidice says most patients opt to stay at least one night. He also says that the results for some symptoms are immediate. “Usually the neck pain is a little bit better right away and the arm symptoms the tingling, weakness and numbness is immediately resolved. The neck pain can take a few weeks to combat, otherwise it’s a pretty quick recovery. Within six weeks you’re usually back to being fully functional,” says Dr. Loguidice.