Posts Tagged spinal disc
CERVICAL DISC REPLACEMENT
The spinal discs (shock-absorbing pads between our vertebrae) help us manage the shocks and stresses of daily movement. Our spines are heavily involved in most kinds of motion (sitting, standing, bending, lifting, twisting, etc.). As such, the facet joints that link our vertebrae as well as the spinal discs between them need to be extremely durable and operate with low back and neck pain levels during normal motion. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Spinal structural deformities, trauma, heavy lifting, and inactivity can all play their part in compromising parts of the spinal column. The natural aging process compounds these factors due to the fact that spinal discs naturally degenerate over time. Spinal and cervical discs become thinner, harder, and less pliable as we age, and as a result they are far less capable of managing the stresses of daily life. We are also more likely to experience back and neck pain as a result of these changes.
All of these problems may create problems in the cervical discs in our necks. Since the neck is routinely engaged in movement, compromised cervical discs can severely affect mobility by causing pain during routine motion. Fortunately, there are a variety of strategies patients can use to mediate pain levels. Over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help mediate pain levels while restoring enough mobility for patients to explore other treatment options. Physical therapy focuses on developing muscles along the spinal column and surrounding the neck to offer support to cervical discs and relieve some of the weight they would otherwise have to bear during routine movement.
For more serious cases, such as severe structural deformity, trauma, or extreme neck pain not resolved by more conservative treatments, cervical disc replacement or cervical fusion may be the best option, depending upon the specific findings, recommendations of the surgeon, and desires of the patient. Since this surgery may be both serious and financially costly, physicians typically do not recommend it unless the compromised cervical disc is threatening other functions in the body (causing a loss of sensation, impinging on nearby spinal nerves, causing muscle weakness, etc.). Bone spurs and compromised cervical discs are the most common causes and physicians operate primarily to maintain the patient’s long-term health, as opposed to simply seeking to reduce pain levels. Of course, indications for surgery may vary from patient to patient.
Recovery for cervical disc replacement, like many types of spinal surgery, can be brief to more prolonged . Rest, a healthy diet, and regimens of physical therapy are necessary to re-develop damaged muscles and relieve some of the pressure on cervical discs. Your physician will likely order several checkups to maintain a sense of your progress and to readjust your course of treatment as needed.
The Kraus Back and Neck Institute (KBNI) in Houston TX cares for patients in Houston and the surrounding areas, including Sugarland, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sealy, Baytown, Pearland, Beaumont, Galleria, Tomball, Conroe, Humble, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Galveston, Memorial City, Texas Medical Center (TMC) and other Texas TX cities including Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin.
Keywords: cervical disc, spinal disc, pain levels, neck pain, Houston, Woodlands, Katy, Spring, Sugarland, Sealy, Pearland, Baytown, Beaumont, Tomball, Galleria, Humble, Conroe, Kingwood, Port Arthur, Memorial City, Galveston, Texas Medical Center (TMC), Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin