Cervical spondylosis, a condition commonly referred to as neck arthritis or cervical osteoarthritis, is a degenerative process that occurs in the cervical spine due to aging. People with cervical spondylosis will express no symptoms despite degeneration in the cervical neck area.
Neurosurgeons recommend surgery to help in managing cervical spondylosis condition in case of failure of conservative treatment to manage the condition or in case of progressive degenerationand compression of the nerve roots and spinal cord.
DrGurneet Singh Sawhney of Neurolife Brain & Spine Clinic and Senior Consultant Neuro& Spine Surgery at Fortis Mulund, Mumbai,states’Surgery for cervical spondylosis is recommended before a permanent neurological deficit occurs in the patient.’
Patients having cervical spondylosiswould suffer from radiculopathy and myelopathy and as the disease progresses. Cervical radiculopathy is a condition in which a nerve root in the neck is pinched due to bony spur or herniated disc. Patient with radiculopathy complains of neurological pain in the hand, reduced reflexes and weakness of the hand depending upon the nerve root involved. The weakness changes depending upon the nerve root.
Myelopathy refers to spinal cord damage diagnosed in patients suffering from cervical spondylosis. In this condition, fibers of the spinal cord are affected resulting in spasticity or tightness, weakness, tingling, and numbness below the level of the compression.
Neurosurgeons focus on procedures to prevent further compression of the spinal cord.While planning the surgery, they take into consideration the location of the compression, the alignment of the cervical spine, and the type of stenosis along with other factors.
Neurosurgeons can decide upon the most suitable surgery to decompress the nerves and the spinal cord. These surgeries can be performed either from the front or the from the rear side of the neck.
If the surgery is performed from the frontal neck region, it is referred to as anterior approach. Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion and anterior cervical corpectomy are the two surgeries performed using anterior approach. Surgeries performed using the posterior approach, i.e. from the back of the neckare cervical laminectomy, cervical laminectomy and fusion, and cervical laminoplasty. If required, surgeries using both the approaches are also performed.
Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF): The anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) method is the most popular approach to handlecervical spondylsis. The ACDF procedure is performed when patients experience radiating pain that extends down to their arm. It involves the extraction of the affected disc and then the placement of a bone graft or an artificial disc to join the vertebrae above and beneath it, with an added titanium plate and screws. ACDF is considered the best way to treat cervical disc ailment.
Spinal decompression surgery : Spinal decompression surgery, also known as laminectomy, involves taking away the rear part of the spine that is called the lamina with the intention of alleviating pressure on the spinal cord. On the other hand, another form of decompression surgery is facetectomy, which involves eliminating the small joint between the vertebrae to decrease the pressure on a particular nerve.
Cervical disc replacement : This procedure has emerged as a reliable alternative more than a decade now. As the name suggest, the ailing disc is removed and substituted with an artificial disc. However, it is important to note that it is only useful if the issue is specifically related to the disc itself. If an individual has a disc herniation that is affecting a nerve, then the disc replacement surgery is a great alternative.
As mentioned earlier, the surgical approach focuses on management of the spinal cord and prevents further damage. DrGurneet Singh Sawhney recommends spinal surgeries to remove bony spurs, or create additional space by removing a part of the vertebrae, or fusion of vertebrae.
About DrGurneet Singh Sawhney
Based in Mumbai, Dr. GurneetSingh Sawhneyhas been providing a wide range of modern neurosurgery treatments for over 17 years. He offers state-of-the-art and tailored neurosurgical services, with the sole purpose of enhancing the lifestyle of his patients.
He is highly experienced in functional neurosurgery, having conducted numerous deep brain stimulation, radio frequency lesioning, awake brain tumor excision, and so on thus making him a preeminent neurosurgeon.
His expertise also encompasses neuro-oncology, vascular neurosurgery, peripheral neurosurgery, minimally invasive spine surgery, image-guided neurosurgery, neurocritical care, and intracranial tumor surgery, especially skull base tumors.
DrGurneet Singh Sawhney is available for consultation at Neurolife Brain & Spine Clinic, and Fortis Hospital, Mulund. Patients can email at firstname.lastname@example.org and call at +91 8104310753