Neck pain is a problem for many men and women. When neck pain becomes too much to bear, drastically limits mobility or reduces quality of life, surgery may be the recommended option. Posterior cervical fusion surgery is a procedure designed to reduce neck pain by decompressing the nerves and immobilizing the degenerated facet joints.
What is Posterior Cervical Fusion Surgery?
The cervical spine refers to the portion of the spine located in the neck. Posterior cervical fusion is a spinal surgery procedure that fuses together two vertebrae in the cervical spine. The majority of neck pain and mobility issues stem from damage to these vertebrae, which are also called spinal segments.
Posterior cervical fusion is used to combat:
- Chronic neck pain
- Neck injuries, fractures and dislocations
- Spinal deformities
- Instability between cervical segments
Posterior cervical fusion is different from anterior cervical fusion because the surgery is performed through the back (posterior) of the neck, rather than the front (anterior). Both approaches have many benefits and the correct approach to the surgery will vary depending on the individual needs of the patient.
How Does Posterior Cervical Fusion Work?
During posterior cervical fusion surgery:
- A small incision is made in the back of the neck.
- The bone graft is wedged into the facet joints. Typically screws are placed in lateral areas of the spinal canal. Rods are fastened to the screws.
- Over time, the graft fuses to the surrounding vertebrae to create a stronger bone and better support the head and neck.
Posterior Cervical Fusion Recovery
Downtime after posterior cervical fusion will vary, but rehabilitation during the recovery period is common. After surgery, it’s typically recommended to avoid vigorous activity until fusion is fully complete and the neck is strong enough.
Request More Information
Posterior cervical fusion can provide a stronger neck, leading to reduced pain and avoiding potentially life-changing cervical spine degeneration. To request more information on neck surgery: contact us.