Spinal fusion surgery options

Minimally invasive anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a type of minimally invasive spine surgery that can provide relief for the painful symptoms of many conditions affecting the cervical (upper) spine.

ACDF performed as a minimally invasive fusion procedure involves a surgeon gaining access to the spine through a small incision in the front of the neck, requiring less muscle disruption than an entry in the back of the neck. The surgeon uses direct visualization equipment and micro-tools to see and remove disc material and then inserts a bone graft and a stabilizing titanium plate.

Pain relief is achieved because the removed disc material is no longer interfering with the nerves running through that part of the spine. The hardware is inserted to fill the empty space and stabilize the area. The goal is for the bone graft to eventually fuse the surrounding vertebrae together. This can be a highly effective treatment when chronic pain has taken you away from family, work and hobbies, and you have exhausted conservative treatments.

Degenerative spine conditions treated with ACDF

Minimally invasive ACDF may be recommended to treat debilitating symptoms caused by the following degenerative spine conditions:

  • Bulging disc — the displacement of the outer wall of a spinal disc
  • Herniated disc — when the outer wall of a disc ruptures and inner disc material pushes out
  • Cervical myelomalacia — an abnormal softening of the upper spinal cord, often resulting from poor blood flow
  • Spondylolisthesis — vertebral slippage
  • Degenerative disc disease — breakdown of discs due to age and general wear and tear

The symptoms of pain, tingling, numbness and muscle weakness caused by spinal nerve compression associated with these and other degenerative spine conditions can usually be managed with a course of nonsurgical treatment. You and your physician should be able to come up with a plan that works best for your situation. Surgery typically becomes an option only after several weeks or months of conservative treatment does not bring acceptable pain relief and a return to normal activity.

Cervical spine stabilization from the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery

To date, Laser Spine Institute has helped more than 75,000 patients dealing with neck and back pain. Our board-certified surgeons+ can perform minimally invasive ACDF surgery in an outpatient setting that emphasizes patient-centered care. Reach out to us today to learn more about the full range of our minimally invasive decompression and minimally invasive stabilization options.

We’re happy to provide a free MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.