Menu Spine Care Upper Back Cervical Spinal Fusion Cervical Spine Surgery Cervical Spine Surgery and Recovery Cervical Stenosis Medtronic O-Arm Imaging System Neck Pain Neck Pain and Balance Neck Pain and Sudden Weakness Spinal Cord Injuries Spondylolisthesis Your Cervical Spine Cervical Spine Surgery and Recovery There are different types of pain that affect the cervical spine: Some neck pain can be mild and bothersome, while other neck pain can be severe and lasting. Both types can impact your life, making daily activities more difficult and keeping you from doing the things you love. Fortunately, medication, physical therapy and other treatment options often relieve neck pain. Your medical team will work closely with you to identify the source of your pain and create a plan to get you feeling better. If neck pain isn’t relieved with non-invasive treatment, you may be a candidate for cervical spine surgery. How do I know if I need neck surgery? Surgery is always the last option to help relieve neck pain. Your doctor may talk to you about cervical spine surgery if: Non-surgical treatments, such as physical therapy, rest, neck braces or medication, don’t relieve your pain Your quality of life is impacted by your neck pain You have experienced neck pain for six months or more, with no relief What type of cervical spine surgery will I need? The type of cervical spine surgery you will need largely depends on your diagnosis. Your physician will work closely with you to discuss surgery options and the surgery that is best for you. Common types of neck surgery include: Cervical disk replacement Cervical spinal fusion Mazor X Medtronic O-Arm Imaging System Cervical disc surgery Cervical disc replacement surgery may be a good option for individuals suffering from continued neck pain caused by damage to a cervical disc. That damage could be from degenerative disc disease, arthritis or an accident. Cervical disc surgery offers many benefits, including improved mobility, reduced pain and a long-lasting solution. Patients who undergo the procedure have a lower risk of needing additional surgeries for up to 10 years after the procedure. Patients at St. Elizabeth benefit from the latest approaches and technology available in surgery to address neck pain. Learn more about cervical disc replacement. Cervical spinal fusion Cervical spinal fusion is another surgical option for patients suffering from neck pain caused by degenerative disc disease, arthritis or an accident. During this procedure, which relieves pressure on the nerves and spinal cord, doctors remove the unhealthy disc and place a spacer between the vertebrae. Fusion stabilizes the neck and protects nerves from getting pinched again. It does stiffen the neck, but generally does not limit movement. Fusion may be a good option for individuals who: Have suffered a serious injury and require stabilization of the neck to avoid risking further damage or paralysis; Require aligning and stabilizing of vertebrae; Suffer from spinal stenosis, herniated discs, the effects of rheumatoid arthritis, spinal deformities or infections Mazor X Mazor X is a minimally-invasive approach to traditional spinal fusion surgery. The robotic surgery allows surgeons to digitally plan and customize each procedure for a patient’s unique anatomy and condition. Mazor X offers precise guidance of surgical tools and implants, which results in shorter surgery times, faster recovery and lowers a patient’s likelihood of needing revision surgery. Learn more about Mazor X. Medtronic O-Arm Imaging System The Medtronic O-Arm Imaging system gives surgeons a complete, 360-degree view of your neck, allowing precise surgical incisions and movements. This accuracy leads to better outcomes, faster recovery and a higher quality of life after surgery. Learn more about the O-Arm Imaging System. Recovery After Cervical Spine Surgery After you are discharged from the hospital, follow a few simple steps to help your recovery process. As always, be sure to follow specific discharge instructions: Be prepared to rest and take it easy. Today’s surgical procedures are often less invasive and offer quicker recovery periods, but it is still important to let your body heal. Follow your doctor’s instructions. Listen closely to your doctor’s discharge instructions and avoid the temptation to push yourself when you start feeling better. You could re-injure your back or slow down recovery time. Take medication as directed by your physician. It’s important to follow instructions for prescriptions or pain medication after your surgery. Taking medicine as prescribed will help ease pain and keep you comfortable as your body heals. Do your exercises. Your doctor and physical therapist will give you specific instructions on what exercises you should be doing and when. Most patients are encouraged to get up and walk around every day. Be sure to follow those directions. It may be uncomfortable immediately after surgery, but physical therapy is another important step in your recovery process and getting your back healthy and strong. Spine Surgery Discharge Instructions Your doctor will provide discharge instructions for your specific neck or back surgery before you leave the hospital. Spend some time reviewing these so you know what to expect when it’s time to go home. Contact Us If you are concerned about your neck pain and would like to learn more about possible causes and treatment options, schedule a consultation today. The team at St. Elizabeth includes surgeons and specialists with unmatched experience in diagnosing and treating injuries, conditions and diseases that cause lumbar and sacral spine pain. Physicians and accredited providers offer their insight on how to best treat your back pain. Meet our non-surgical spine doctors. If you need surgery, our experienced affiliated surgeons will map out a plan that’s tailored to your health history, condition and symptoms. Meet our surgeons.