Cervical fusion is a surgical procedure performed anteriorly or posteriorly to join at least two of the vertebrae of the neck. This surgery is performed to alleviate pain in patients with disorders of the cervical spine, such as stenosis and degenerative disc disease.
For many conditions, anterior spinal fusion is an excellent option and can result in dramatic improvement in pain symptoms and quality of life. Surgery is not necessary in every case. No one type of surgery works for every neck pain problem. Numerous surgical procedures have been designed to treat each type of neck pain.
After the disc has been removed between the vertebrae, a cervical fusion is performed. The space where the disc was taken out is filled with a block of bone taken from the top rim of the pelvis. Bone taken from your own body is called autograft.
Your surgeon may obtain bone from a source other than your body, called allograft. This bone is kept in a bone bank. Placing a bone graft between two or more vertebrae causes the vertebrae to fuse. Sometimes local bone grafts with spacers are used.
Reasons For Cervical Fusion Spine Surgery
Cervical fusion is performed to stop painful movement in the targeted area. It is often performed in conjunction with a cervical discectomy to relieve compression of spinal nerves. Patients may require a cervical fusion for various reasons, including:
- Cervical spine trauma
- Cervical disc prolapse
- Infections of cervical spine
- Reconstruction and fusion after cervical tumor excision.
Anterior cervical fusion is performed from the front of the neck region and commonly performed in conjunction with an anterior cervical discectomy.
This type of fusion is much more common in the neck. Anterior cervical fusions are also done to treat cervical instability due to tumor, infection, or trauma.
What are the benefits of a spinal fusion?
- Lessen pain in the neck area
- Ability to be more active and have a better quality of life
- Improve your physical fitness
- Able to return to work or other activities.
Who can Benefit from Anterior Cervical Fusion?
Candidates for fusion surgery usually have some combination of the following symptoms:
- Neck pain
- Pain between the shoulder blades
- Severe Radiating pain in the arm or weakness
- Changes in gait
- Difficulty and loss of balance in walking
An anterior cervical fusion is done for two reasons:
1 To remove pressure from the nerve roots caused by bone spurs or herniated disc material
2 To stop the motion between two vertebrae – a spinal segment
Eliminate excessive motion and provide spinal stability with ACF. Call for Appointment
Anterior Cervical Fusion
Cervical radiculopathy is a spine disorder in which your cervical (upper) vertebrae nerves get compressed. During this condition, you may have extreme pain and numbness in your neck, arms, chest, and shoulders.
Cervical radiculopathy mostly occurs due to a ruptured disc, arthritis, or other degenerative condition or injury to the cervical (upper) vertebrae. It occurs mainly in upper age groups affecting their ability to hold objects with hands.
In instances, when cervical radiculopathy cannot be cured with nonsurgical treatment options such as anti-inflammatory medications and physical therapy, then Anterior Cervical Fusion will be your only option left to relieve severe pain.
Anterior Cervical Fusion involves the decompression of nerve roots travelling from the spine to the neck, arms, chest, and shoulders. It creates space and eliminates motion in the damaged portions of the neck
Candidates for Anterior Cervical Fusion
This procedure is commonly done for patients with cervical disc prolapse. But it is also done for conditions like trauma to the neck, After tumor excision and other conditions.
As a part of the assessment, Dr Surya Prakash will discuss the procedure in detail and explain about the techniques employed for the procedure. However, the treatment approach followed will depend on your diagnosis, medical history, and earlier treatments. He may also ask for blood tests, X-rays or other imaging studies, and other special tests for diabetes and cardiac disease.
Typically listening to the history and pattern of the pain allows the physician to determine where the problem is. After physical examination and radiographic studies (MRI, CT, myelogram with CT, and/or plain films), the area of concern is usually identified.
If you have any questions or concerns about your recovery from anterior cervical fusion surgery. For more information, please visit
You will be given general anaesthesia, with the gauges, monitors and equipment attached to your body. These equipment are used to monitor your vital parameters at every stage of the procedure. The level will be identified with the help of a image intensifier and small incision will be placed over the affected area
Surgeon reach the intervertebral disc by gently dissecting and retracting the muscles and reach the area of interest. He will then use a microscope to gently decompress the nerves and the damaged disc portion will be removed .
The osteophytes which compress the nerves also will be removed .The spinal cord and nerve roots are thoroughly decompressed. This space is created between the upper and lower vertebral bodies, which is restored using extra bone grafts or spacers. Then Dr Surya Prakash fixes the anterior portion of the spine with a cervical plate.
Post Operative Care:
- Consider regular appointments
- Keep your incision dry and clean
- Start physical therapy and regular exercises
- Avoid lifting heavy objects
- Avoid smoking and chewing tobacco
- Don’t drive until your surgeon gives a clearance
- Consider a healthy and nutritious diet
- Take all the prescribed medications regularly
- Wear the cervical brace until the wound gets healed completely
Recovery From Cervical Fusion
In skilled hands, this is a very safe procedure. In the end, after recovering from anterior cervical fusion surgery, most patients report significant improvements and a decrease in pain. In general, the sooner a patient seeks treatment for his or her pain, the better the chances of a successful recovery from anterior cervical fusion surgery.
Patients who undergo anterior cervical surgery can often return to light activities within a few weeks, but this can vary depending on the individual patient, number of levels treated, and other factors. Recovery will include rest, physical therapy, and a short course of pain management medication.
Talk to Dr Surya prakash Discuss details of recovery from the various orthopedic surgical procedures he offers. If you are experiencing neck and arm pain, an anterior cervical fusion may be the best option for you.
Dr Surya Prakash Rao Voleti (M.S. DNB (Ortho) (BOM) A.O. ), the best spine surgeon who performs anterior cervical fusion surgery in Hyderabad regularly for patients suffering from cervical disc prolapse and other conditions which require this procedure. He is a fellowship-trained spine surgeon who treats all conditions of spine including spinal deformity, complicated and complex spinal surgery.
Anterior Cervical Fusion FAQs
1. How Long Does The Surgery Take?
The surgery usually takes 1-3 hours and will have an average length of 2-3 days of hospital stay.
2. What Are The Alternatives To Anterior Cervical Fusion Surgery?
In selected patients who are young who are cervical arthroplasty is an alternative to Anterior Cervical Fusion Surgery
3. What Are The Results of Anterior Cervical Fusion Surgery?
ACFS gives consistently give good results and excellent patient satisfaction
4. What other Common Conditions Treated by Dr Surya Parakash Voleti?
Dr Surya Prakash uses anterior cervical fusion surgery to treat the following conditions.
- Spinal stenosis
- Degenerative disc disease
- A bulging or prolapsed intervertebral disc
- Bony spurs (osteophytes)
- Spondylosis (osteoarthritis of the spine)
5. Why Choose Dr Surya Prakash For Your spinal surgery?
- Highly qualified spine surgeon trained from recognized institutes
- Always correct patients back and neck conditions
- Performs complex spinal surgeries using minimally invasive techniques whenever possible.
- Uses the internationally established method of treating pain and inflammation
- Tailored treatment plan depending on the individual case and health history
- Excellent quality of care and the use of cutting edge technology
- Hygiene standards followed by medical ethics and best follow-up care
6. Why are bones fused?
Joining the bones together will limit how much they move. This may help lower your pain or fix other problems you are having. The number of bones you will have joined together depends on the problems you have.
7. Are there different kinds of bone grafts?
There are many different types of bone grafts. Two of the more common types are grafts from a patient’s own body (autograft) and grafts from a bone bank (allograft). There are also artificial bone graft materials that can be used.
8. Why do I need Anterior spinal fusion surgery?
Compression or squeezing on the nerves in the spinal cord or nerve roots may be causing many of the different types of symptoms that you may be experiencing. These symptoms may include:
1 headaches in the back of your head
2 pain in your neck, shoulder, upper back, arm, or fingers, as well as occasional or frequent
3 numbness, tingling and weakness
4 more serious problems, such as the loss of balance and problems with coordination and dexterity.
9. What are the other causes where spinal nerves get compressed or squeezed?
Conditions causing spinal nerves to be compressed or squeezed are including:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Herniated disc
- Bulging disc
- Spinal stenosis
10. What to expect after surgery?
This surgery usually requires a short stay in the hospital. You may need to wear a brace on your neck (cervical collar) during recovery.
11. What are the different methods to restore the intervertebral disc space ?
- Bone grafting
- Metal implants and spacers
- Artificial cervical disc in selected patients
12. What is Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF)?
Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a type of neck surgery that involves removing a damaged disc to relieve spinal cord or nerve root pressure and alleviate corresponding pain, weakness, numbness, and tingling. A discectomy is a form of surgical decompression, so the procedure may also be called an anterior cervical decompression.
The surgery has 2 parts:
1. Anterior cervical discectomy
2. cervical fusion surgery