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Spinal Surgery

Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion

Anterior Cervical
Discectomy and Fusion
Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a microsurgical  procedure to treat nerve root or spinal cord compression by decompressing the spinal cord and nerve roots of the cervical spine with a discectomy; and instrumentation to stabilize the spine allowing bone growth in the space previously for the disc.  This “new bone growth” that takes place over a period of time is called a “fusion.”

ACDF is used to treat pain from a herniated disc when other non-surgical treatments have failed. The nucleus pulposus (the jelly-like center of the disc) bulges out through the annulus (surrounding wall) and presses on the nerve root or spinal cord next to it. This nerve root becomes inflamed and causes sometime severe pain and neurologic symptoms (numbness, tingling, pins, needles, burning, cramping, weakness, discoordination, searing pain in the arms and sometimes the legs.)  The problem can also be caused by degenerative disc disease (spondylosis). The disc consists of about 80% water. When one grows older, the disc starts to dry out and shrink, causing small tears in the annulus and inflammation of the nerve root.