San Francisco Chiropractor and Spinal Decompression Doctor Comments:
I just got through reading an article on the excellent www.spine-health.com website. The article is about a new product for artificial cervical disc replacement by Medtronic, a medical device company. The device is for people with single level degenerative disc disease. Mostly, spinal degeneration is a process that occurs gradually over time and involves multiple spinal levels. It is rare to see only one degenerated spinal disc. But if the disc injury was due to a trauma, such as a car accident, work injury, or something similar, it can happen. I do remember having a young patient (19 yrs old) that had a good looking spine, except one disc was really bad (almost gone) from some sort of fall where his back stuck a metal object when he was 5 years old. But his problem was in the low back. Anyway, hopefully there will be good use for this artificial cervical disc. I would want to be sure that the disc was so bad that it could not possibly benefit from nonsurgical spinal decompression first, because this artificial disc is permanent. Nonsurgical cervical spinal decompression would no longer be an option with a metal implant in the spine. And, who knows how it will effect the rest of the spine over time. It's still an option that did not exist before, and there's nothing wrong with that.