Artificial disc replacement

In addition to standardized regular fusion surgeries that are performed from the front (anterior), back (posterior) or even in case of complex injuries from both sides, now more often artificial discs  are used.

This artificial disc replacement is supposed to come close to the biomechanics of a natural disc and possibly has the advantage of avoiding adjacent level instability. This is supposedly accomplished by the retained mobility of the affected level.

Since this technique is still very new, there are controversial studies. Some say artificial discs have advantages compared to a regular fusion, others want to have shown no difference. Disc replacements usually do not need a long time of immobility of the cervical spine and people can get back to daily activity sooner.

There are several companies that develop those prosthesis, and different mechanisms.

See publications:

Invasive Therapy Publications