Your healthcare professional may recommend an ACDF if you are suffering from disc herniation or degeneration in the upper part of the spine known as the cervical area. The Anterior Cervical Discectomy is a procedure that involves surgically entering the front (Anterior) of the neck (Cervical) and removing a damaged cervical disc (Discectomy). Implants of bone and/or metal are put in place of the damaged disc and act to fuse the two vertebra together.
If you have some of the following conditions or symptoms, you may be a candidate for an ACDF:
Your healthcare provider can review the exact symptoms and causes that apply to you and why you may be a candidate for the Anterior Cervical Discectomy with Fusion.
An incision is made across the front of the neck to gain access to the cervical spine.
The damaged disc is removed, relieving pressure from the previously pinched nerve roots. Space is made above and below the removed disc, making room for the bone graft.
The bone graft is inserted between the vertebra, in the space made for it in the previous step.
A metal plate may be attached to the area to hold the bones in place during the healing process.
The bone graft binds with the vertebra, growing together to help stabilize the spine.
Recovery time is specific for each patient, but your surgeon will have a recovery plan to get you back to normal after the operation. Typically, patients are walking around by the end of the day, and able to return to work in 3-6 weeks, depending on how healed they are and the level of activity involved.