Neurosurgery located in Midtown, Ventura, CA
If you have neck or back pain due to a severely damaged or degenerated spinal disc, disc replacement surgery might be the best option to restore your spine and relieve your pain. At Ventura Neurosurgery, in Ventura, California, David Westra, MD, a board-certified neurosurgeon, and Michael Dorsi, MD provide expert disc replacement surgery both in the cervical (neck) and lumbar (lower) spine. If you’re looking for expert-performed surgery for spine problems, call Ventura Neurosurgery, or make an appointment online today.
Disc Replacement Q&A
What is a disc replacement?
Your spinal discs are rubbery cushions that protect your vertebrae and allow you to bend and twist your spine. As you age, your spinal discs can become dry and stiff, which makes them vulnerable to injury and degeneration.
Disc replacement is a surgical procedure to replace damaged or worn-out spinal discs with state-of-the-art prosthetic devices. Artificial discs perform the same functions as your natural discs — absorbing shock, allowing motion, and supporting your weight.
Why would I need a disc replacement?
Pain is the most common reason that you might need a disc replacement in your neck or lower back. The team at Ventura Neurosurgery might recommend disc replacement to address pain caused by:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Herniated discs
- Slipped discs
In most cases, the team tries to reduce your pain and heal your spine with non-surgical treatments like spinal injections or physical therapy before recommending surgery.
What happens during a disc replacement?
The team at Ventura Neurosurgery provides general anesthesia to keep you comfortable and asleep during your disc replacement operation. Whenever possible, they use minimally invasive surgical procedures and state-of-the-art equipment, including tubal dilators and a microscope or endoscope, to complete your surgery.
Depending on your condition and the location of your damaged disc, they might use an anterior (front), lateral (side), or posterior (rear) approach to access your spine.
When they access your spine, your neurosurgeon carefully extracts your damaged disc and repairs any spinal collapse to open and restore your disc space. Then, your surgeon implants a prosthetic disc.
When your replacement disc is in place, your neurosurgeon removes the surgical instruments and closes your incisions.
What should I expect while recovering from a disc replacement?
Following surgery, your neurosurgeon prescribes medication to reduce your pain and risk of infection. You might need to spend a couple of days in the hospital to recover, although if you had minimally invasive surgery, you can usually go home to recover earlier.
While you recover, you have physical therapy to help you maintain your strength, flexibility, and range of motion. As your spine heals, your physical therapy increases to help you return to your regular activities.
If you have spine pain due to damaged spinal discs, and non-surgical treatment hasn’t relieved your symptoms, call Ventura Neurosurgery or make an appointment online today to find out if disc replacement is right for you.