Anterior Cervical Corpectomy And Fusion
An anterior cervical corpectomy and fusion is a surgical procedure in which vertebral bone and intervertebral disc material is removed to relieve pressure on the spinal cord and spinal nerves (decompression) in the cervical spine, or neck.
What Is An Anterior Cervical Corpectomy And Fusion?
The term corpectomy is derived from the Latin wordscorpus (body) and -ectomy (removal). The procedure typically involves accessing the cervical spine through an anterior approach, or from the front. Spinal fusion is usually necessary because of the amount of vertebral bone and/or disc material that must be removed to achieve sufficient decompression of the neural structures.
Spinal fusion involves placing bone graft or bone graft substitute between two or more affected vertebrae to promote bone growth between the vertebral bodies. The graft material acts as a binding medium and also helps maintain normal disc height – as the body heals, the vertebral bone and bone graft eventually grow together to join the vertebrae and stabilize the spine.
Why Do I Need This Procedure?
Nerve compression in the cervical can cause neck pain and/or pain, numbness and weakness that extends into the shoulders, arms and hands.
Degenerative spinal conditions, including herniated discs and bone spurs, are common causes of spinal nerve compression. Spinal fracture, tumor or infection also may result in pressure on the spinal nerves.
To determine whether your condition requires treatment with an anterior cervical corpectomy and fusion, your doctor will examine your spine and take your medical history, and may order an x-ray, computed tomography (CT) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan of your cervical vertebrae. An anterior cervical corpectomy and fusion is typically recommended only after conservative treatment methods fail. Your surgeon will take a number of factors into consideration before making this recommendation, including the condition to be treated, your age, health and lifestyle and your anticipated level of activity following surgery. Please discuss this treatment option thoroughly with your spinal care provider.