If you experience neck pain, you could get some relief from your discomfort through intensive rehab and therapies. However, when conservative treatments don't work, you may need cervical artificial disc replacement surgery.

Cervical disc replacement is a relatively new process involving the removal of a diseased cervical disc and replacing it with a new one. The surgeon will also remove any residual disc fragments or bone spurs. The disc space is maintained at its healthy height in order to help relieve pressure on the spinal nerves. This procedure can provide more range of motion than traditional neck fusion.

It is important to note that disc replacement does not increase,but rather maintains the range of motion of the neck. Even though a new artificial disc has been inserted,a stiff or arthritic joint that did not move before disc replacement is not likely to move afterwards.

Dr. Barrett Woods, Orthopedic Surgeon with The Rothman Institute, explains the procedure and who is a candidate for it during Living Well with Robin Stoloff.

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