This surgery involves fusing, or joining, two or more cervical vertebrae (the bones that make up the upper part of the spine).
Cervical spine fusion is surgery to join two or more cervical vertebrae (the bones that make up the upper part of the spine), also known as the neck. Fusing or joining the vertebrae prevents these bones from moving and putting pressure on other areas of the neck.
Your healthcare provider may recommend a cervical spine fusion if you are having surgery to remove all, or part of, the cushion that separates the bones in the neck (diskectomy). Some other reasons for a cervical fusion include:
Prior to surgery, tell your healthcare provider about any medications you are taking (including over-the-counter medications and supplements). Ask about specific instructions you should follow before surgery. These may include:
If you are a smoker, you should quit smoking, as it can interfere with your recovery.
A cervical fusion typically takes several hours. During surgery, you will receive anesthesia to keep you comfortable and pain free. General anesthesia is the most common type of anesthesia for a cervical fusion. It is where you are put into a deep sleep and are unable to see, hear, or feel anything. You may spend a few days in the hospital after surgery. However, depending on the nature of your specific condition and health, your doctor may feel that your surgery may be safely done as an outpatient procedure.
Do not forget to make arrangements for transportation to and from the facility and help at home.
What should I ask my healthcare provider before having a cervical spine fusion?
After your surgery, you should know what you had done, what medication was given, and what symptoms you should report to your healthcare provider. You should also understand all home care instructions (including medications and side effects) and follow-up plans. Your surgeon should also let your primary care physician know the details of your surgery and treatment plan.
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