ACDF (Anterior Cervical Discectomy & Fusion)

Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a surgery to remove a herniated or degenerative disc in the cervical spine. An incision is made over front of the throat area to reach the front of the spine. The disc is removed to release pressure from the spinal cord and the nerves and a graft is inserted to fuse the bones above and below the disc.

ACDF surgery may be recommend in-

  • Cervical disc prolapse causing cord compression (Cervical myelopathy) & difficulty walking and weakness of hands
  • Cervical disc compressing the nerves causing neck pain/ arm pain/ shoulder pain which has not relieved with physical therapy or medications
  • Numbness or weakness in limb due to pinched spinal nerves by cervical disc
  • Cervical spine fractures
  • Infective discitis of cervical disc
  • Tumours affecting body of cervical vertebra

Patients typically are mobilized from the very next day and can go home the 3rd day; recovery time takes 4 weeks.
After fusion you may notice some range of motion loss, but this varies according to neck mobility before surgery and the number of levels fused. If only one level is fused, you may have similar or even better range of motion than before surgery. If more than two levels are fused, you may notice limits in turning your head and looking up and down. Motion-preserving artificial disc replacements have emerged as an alternative to fusion. Similar to knee replacement, the artificial disc is inserted into the damaged joint space and preserves motion, whereas fusion eliminates motion.

Pre Op MRI
Post Op X-ray