This is a common procedure performed when disc or bone fragments are pushing on the spinal cord or spinal nerves in the neck area. This condition generally causes pain that radiates into the shoulders or arms and sometimes causes problems with walking and fine motor skills. The surgery is performed by making an incision on the front side of the neck then creating a natural plane that allows for exposure of the spinal column. At this point, disc, bone and ligament tissue is removed and the compressed nerves are released. This space is then filled with a structural device and bone graft to allow for fusion of the motion segment. The procedure is done under general anesthesia and most patients stay only one night in the hospital. Following surgery, the patient wears a neck brace for 2 to 6 weeks and can return to most activities within two weeks.
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