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The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 91-B, Issue 6 | Pages 713 - 719
1 Jun 2009
Denaro V Papalia R Denaro L Di Martino A Maffulli N

Cervical spinal disc replacement is used in the management of degenerative cervical disc disease in an attempt to preserve cervical spinal movement and to prevent adjacent disc overload and subsequent degeneration. A large number of patients have undergone cervical spinal disc replacement, but the effectiveness of these implants is still uncertain. In most instances, degenerative change at adjacent levels represents the physiological progression of the natural history of the arthritic disc, and is unrelated to the surgeon. Complications of cervical disc replacement include loss of movement from periprosthetic ankylosis and ossification, neurological deficit, loosening and failure of the device, and worsening of any cervical kyphosis. Strict selection criteria and adherence to scientific evidence are necessary. Only prospective, randomised clinical trials with long-term follow-up will establish any real advantage of cervical spinal disc replacement over fusion.