What to Expect with Discectomy and Fusion?


As most nerves within the body, such as the abdomen, chest, legs, and arms, pass through the neck area from the brain, stress on the spinal cord in this area could be highly severe. If you have a degenerating or herniated disc in your cervical spine, the chances are that your failing disc is exerting unnecessary pressure. Often, this results in chronic back and neck pain, which might radiate to the hands and arms. Polaris Spine & Neurosurgery Center experts employ minimally invasive surgical approaches for discectomy and fusion in Atlanta and the greater Georgia area to resolve chronic back pain, neck pain, and restricted mobility issues. Call the office or book an appointment online today to determine if discectomy and fusion surgery is right for you.

What Are Discectomy and Fusion?

A discectomy and fusion surgery eliminates a ruptured or herniated disc in the neck in a minimally invasive operation. This surgical technique can alleviate stress on the nerve roots or spine and associated tingling, weakness, discomfort, and numbness.

A technique is frequently followed by fusion surgery to stabilize the spine. Your surgeon can reach the disc from the front, side, or back of the neck to achieve exceptional outcomes.

By using a minimally invasive approach, the specialists at Polaris Spine & Neurosurgery Center access the full upper region of the spine with much less postoperative pain and a quicker recovery period than standard surgery.

Who Is a Candidate for Discectomy and Fusion?

There are various factors wherein one might consider discectomy and fusion surgery. You might be the right candidate for this procedure if:

  • A bulging or herniated disc is causing chronic neck or back pain
  • You experience weakness in the arm or hand
  • You have explored all conservative therapy options, including medications and/or physical therapy, without success.

Before deciding on discectomy and fusion surgery, carefully weigh the risks and advantages. After six weeks of conservative (non-invasive) treatment, only approximately 10% of persons with herniated or bulging discs have enough discomfort to consider surgery.

What Should You Expect Following a Discectomy and Fusion Procedure?

After being discharged from the surgery facility, you should expect to be out of action for about 4-6 weeks. Your first follow-up meeting with your specialist will take place four weeks after surgery. During this appointment, your physician will assess if fusion has occurred and clarify any concerns you might have regarding the healing process.

As you recover, your provider might suggest you don a cervical collar to restrict movement and offer support. Upon full recovery, physical therapy may be beneficial to restore your range of motion and attain the best results. Gradually increase the intensity of your workouts as per the doctor’s recommendation, and do not engage in any strenuous activity till your physician gives you the ‘green light.’

The period it will take to recover following discectomy and fusion varies from person to person. Therefore, expect the recovery process to take weeks or even several months.

Have conservative options failed to provide relief for your neck or back pain? Contact Polaris Spine & Neurosurgery Center over the phone or schedule a consultation online to discuss the effectiveness of discectomy and fusion for you.


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