Re: Disc Replacement at 2 Levels
I looked into adr (artificial disc replacements) when my back problems became so severe that I knew that I was headed to surgery . Although the portend to claim that they preserve spinal motion, they do in fact, not preserve spinal motion since they do not operate as a normal disc does in the spine, and over the last few years, there are more and more reports about negative outcomes versus fusion. The outcomes in the L5-S1 disc space are not good since there is little movement in that area of the spine anyway, and it appears to cause or worsen facet degeneration in that level. Many adr surgeons will tell you that if it doesn't work then they can just fuse that level, what they do not tell you though is that due to large abdominal arteries and veins in the area they need to get to to place the discs, going back in to either remove the disc ( unlikely) or to fuse through the front is lifethreatening due to the potential for damaging those arteries and veins. In the event that the disc replacement is not successful means that a fusion will probably have to be done, posteriorly and that may not ease the pain .
Having tried to keep up with the newer technologies out there, I personally would not choose to have adr...the technology is not there yet to preserve spinal motion as they claim and there are high risks associated with any surgery to remove the disc and too few surgeons willing to take that risk when things go badly.