Neck Surgeries

Neck surgeries are one of the commonly performed procedures when non-surgical treatments fail to reduce neck pain symptoms, especially those related to compression of the spinal cord or nerve roots.

There are three common reasons to have neck surgeries:

  • To remove the damaged disc and/or other structures compressing a nerve root
  • To decompress the spinal cord
  • To stabilize the cervical spine

At MoveFree Physio we provide post-operative rehabilitation for all the neck surgeries. The rehabilitation protocol is aimed at:

  • Reducing post-operative pain
  • Regaining neck and shoulder joint range of motion
  • Regaining functional mobility, strength and flexibility of the cervical spine
  • Patient education on posture, movement and ergonomic correction
  • Addressing fear avoidance behavior and lack of confidence
  • Graded return to sport/ gym

Here are some of the common neck surgeries performed to reduce neck pain:

Anterior Cervical Discectomy and fusion (ACDF)

ACDF is a type of neck surgery that involves removing the damaged disc to reduce compression on the spinal cord and/or nerve root, and alleviate corresponding pain, weakness, numbness and tingling in the upper limb. A fusion procedure, involves placing bone graft or implants where the disc was originally present, is also done along with discectomy in order to stabilize the cervical segment. This surgery is approached through the front of the neck.

Another way of doing discectomy is through the back of the neck, called Posterior Cervical Discectomy. In this procedure, only part of the disc is removed, and no spinal fusion is needed.

Posterior Cervical Laminectomy

This surgery involves the removal of lamina, which is the back part of the vertebra to increase space in the spinal canal. The main advantage to this surgery is that more flexibility in the neck can be retained if a spinal fusion can be avoided.

Posterior Cervical Laminoplasty

This surgery is similar to laminectomy, except the lamina isn’t completely removed. Rather the lamina is cut and restructured to make more space in the spinal canal.

Posterior Cervical Foraminotomy

This surgery involves removal of a small part of the foramen where the nerve pass through. If a nerve is irritated by a herniated disc, then a part of the disc might also be removed. If a nerve is irritated by a bone spur, then the surgeon might chisel away the bone spur.