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Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF)

Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is surgery to remove a herniated or diseased disc in the neck. The procedure is performed to relieve pressure on the nerve roots or spinal cord and eliminate pain. During ACDF, the surgeon makes an incision in the front of the neck to reach the spine. The problematic disc is removed, along with any bone spurs, and the vertebrae are fused together with a bone graft. Typically screws and a titanium plate are used to increase stability between the vertebrae. Advantages of the anterior approach (from the front) include better access to the cervical spine, less muscle disruption and less post-operative pain.

Who is a good candidate for Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF)?

Candidates for ACDF are those with worsening pain, weakness or instability in the neck, shoulder, arms or hands from a herniated disc or cervical degenerative disc disease. It is important that each patient is carefully screened by a qualified surgeon to determine the most appropriate treatment.

When is surgery recommended for Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF)?

ACDF may be your best option if you have pain or weakness in your neck, shoulders, arms or hands resulting from a herniated or diseased disc that limits your everyday activities, conservative measures have failed, symptoms are worsening, and you are not a candidate for cervical disc replacement.

What is the recovery time for Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF)?

Patients are typically walking the day of surgery and go home the next day. In some cases, patients wear a collar to stabilize the neck and for comfort. Many people are able to resume work and daily activities within a week to two weeks. Those with physically demanding jobs that include lifting and operating heavy machinery may have to wait longer to return to work, typically about six weeks. As with all surgical procedures, specific recovery time varies by patient and demand.

Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF) in Saint Louis, Missouri

At Disc Replacement Center of Saint Louis, we offer a variety of surgical and nonsurgical treatment options for degenerative disc disease, including anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF). If you would like to learn more about anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) or would like to schedule an evaluation to find out if you are a candidate, please contact our office at (314) 932-6486.

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