ACDF Implants

Posted , 7 users are following.

So I'm allergic to nickel and my neurosurgeon ditched the idea of using the titanium plates (since they are mixed with a bit of nickel) my only choices are now using tantalum or a cadaver bone. He said he wasn't sure if he could acquire the tantalum cages though. Cadaver bone has a 15-20% non-fusion rate that follows and I'd have to be in a hard collar for 3 months (initially 6 weeks if using a cage). So is tantalum something that is used in the U.S that can be acquired? Should I push the surgery date to wait for the tantalum or just suffer through the 3 months of hard collar with a earlier surgery date with the cadaver bone while risking the non-fusion rates? Even if tantalum is acquired, I figure I would have to get tested for it, but I heard it was a bio-inert and there were no reports of tantalum allergies.

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22 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi,

    I may have responded before to one of your posts, or not.

    Cervical surgery does have its drawbacks as well as its successes. Sometimes plates screwed to sound vertebrae can weaken at the screw insert, bone may or may not fuse, cage may be rejected or cause pain for months or years. No surgery to the neck is straightforward and whatever type you go for it may be cancelled several times beforehand, unless it is private surgery.

    The choice you make is probably for life, so the best of luck in whatever decision you make.

    Mike.

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  • Posted

    Hi Grapes,

    I'm going to try and get an implant done on my neck, My thoughts were that seeing as I only have one damaged disc, an implant wouldnt put further stress on the discs above and below, but I have heard fusion surgery can cause damage to other discs? But thats only my opinion.

    Thanks Sean

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  • Posted

    Hi there,

    Not sure if this is relevant but i had C5/C6 disk replacement last year. They used Medtronics Prestige LP. No issues at all, no recovery time except for external incision healing - wonderful work with fantastic implant results. Male, 50 years, otherwise healthy. Drop a note if you need any further details. Cheers, Phil

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    • Posted

      I had it done in Davao City, Philippines. The Surgeon has an excellent track record and is of course Medtronics trained and approved. Couldn't have wished for a better outcome. Overall cost was the equivalent of USD 18,000, about half of which was the cost of the implant itself. Interestingly enough, I see that the same implant has recently (in the last 2 months) gained FDA approval for multi level disc failure, which will certainly help those potential ACDF patients.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Phil for getting back to me so quickly.I have suffered from disc prolapse and degenerative disc disease and this proceedure has given me hope. And yes it is approved in the US . IT was reciently on the news. 

      So so glad you are doing so well and keep in touch. 

      HOPE 😊

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    • Posted

      Hi there,

      I looked into the Medtronics Prestige LP and it looks like it can be used for an ACDF as well. I noticed it was made of stainless steel as well and it notes that it preserves the range of motion. How are you doing now? Is your range of motion good as indiciated and you have no other complications? Was there a specific reason why your surgeon wanted to use this? Looking forward to hearing more. Thanks.

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    • Posted

      Hi Grapes, actually the surgeon wanted to do ACDF, the bone fusion method rather than Artificial disc replacement. It was myself who did the research and when I suggested it to him he said that it is indeed the gold standard but he rarely suggests it due to the higher cost. I didn't want to have to wear a collar for weeks or months and didnt want any loss of range of motion, so went for this. I have not noticed any loss or range of motion whatsoever, although psychologically we become cautions of trying to put that to the test in our day to day lives I guess. In my case, I had 95% compression on my spineal cord and damage as a result, so they said that teh aim of surgery was to redce the compressiona nd prevent deterioration - any improvement i symptions (Pain, numbness, tingling etc) would be a bonus. I was fortunate to have had around 75% reduction i symptoms, I am back to running around 30Km a  week and playing squash (Racketball) smile

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    • Posted

      Awesome to hear that your surgery was a success in reducing your symptoms. DId you have any neck pain prior to surgery or still do? Most of my complaint is neck pain and pain the shoulder blades, tingling in arms etc. Although the surgeon did mention that my symptoms will probably be worse after surgery for a while until recovery and he said there was no guarentee that my neck pain would be improved. My surgery will be covered by insurance so the cost really isn't an issue, I have spinal compression as well and we'll be moving forward with a one or two level fusion depending on the new MRI. Haven't discussed anything other than the ACDF though, so it's interesting hearing about the artificial disc replacement, although I'm not sure if this procedure would be suitable in my case but I guess it is an option to discuss.

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    • Posted

      Good for you for doing your own research. Great to hear you're doing so well. This is such great news. My son is in construction and has suffered from disc issues for years.i have passed this on to him he already found a surgeon that does this and hopping it will help him too! 

      I have read read a lot online about this and watched utube videos. 

      As as soon as I complete recovery from THR revision I will look into this too! 

      You have been so positive and encouraging. Your proof that Sometimes it's better in today's health climate to be our own- self health advocates. 

      Thanks for sharing. Very informative. One issue I had on this forum sharing the mane of the artificial disc my post was pulled by moderator. 

      So I am,spreading the word by PM's.

      Hope xxx 👍

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    • Posted

      Funily enough, I never had any neck pain at all before the surgery, it was a horrible burning, tingling and aching numbness type of thing in both forearms, wrists, hands and fingers. I have attached some pics of my MRI before surgery and during, once they inserted the implant.
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    • Posted

      Hello Phil,

      Was doing some research and ran into this thread, had a question regarding your ADR. Normally I have read that an artificial disc replacement was only done and one is a better candidate if only one-level is involved compared to an ACDF that covers multiple levels. You mention C5/C6 which is a two-level, was this not a concern for you or a your surgeon when considering the ADR over the ACDF? Thanks in advance.

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    • Posted

      Hi Brandon, yes, like Sean says, in my case the C5/C6 refers to a single level issue. (a 2 level would read something like (C5/C6/C7) The type of implant that I had is now FDA approved for two level conditions though so it covers both conditions. Fusion is fusion and once done results in the expected limitations, it all depends on the individual patient expectations really and what trade offs the patient is willing to forego.
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    • Posted

      Phil,

      Ah alright, thanks for the clarification. Do you know if the ADR is suitable for people with multiple levels involved? Was your procedure covered by insurance? I was diagnosed for a need for a fusion, levels dependant on the new exams they'll be running but it will most likely be one or two levels. Thanks.

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    • Posted

      Hi Branden,

      Yes indeed, the Prestge LP implant is approved for 2 adjacent levels. They normally propose fusion initially, as it is the cheaper option, but is not as straightforward, has longer recovery time etc. Mine was covered by insurance but I did have a small battle convincing them why I eneded the Prestige Implant rather than the fusion. I would think in your case, if 2 levels require fusion, then you could expect to lose a fair bit of range of motion with fusion, but much elss with an implant.

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    • Posted

      Phil,

      Appreciate the reply. I guess one concern with the ADR isy cobalt allergy, did some research on the Prestige and it seems like it's a mix of alloys with titanium, not sure what else it contains. Assuming that you had a successful result, you don't have any metal allergies so this wasn't an issue for you. Motion loss with the fusion I was told 20% up and down and side to side, but I do some more research and perhaps discuss with my neurosurgeon if ADR will be suitable for me and if they can get a disc implant that is allergy free for me (not sure if they exist as most are similar materials from what I've researched so far).

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    • Posted

      Right, good point Branden, In my case the only implant that did not require any screws or plates was the Prestige LP, fuunnily enough I was never tested for any allergy though, so guess it was just a case of good luck in my favour.
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    • Posted

      Hi Phil,

      Hope all is well. I just came across this thread in the hope of getting better outlook of my C6/C7 herniation. Doctor told me to try at least 12 sessions of physiotherapy first before moving onto a more aggressive management that is surgery.

      I play basketball and lift weights a lot - these might have caused the situation.

      Would like to check how you've been doing lately.

      Any residual signs of pre-surgery symptoms?

      Your response will be much appreciated. I live in Manila by the way. 40 y/o male.

      Cheers

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    • Posted

      HI Edwin,

      I am now about 30 months post op and doing great, no residual symptoms of the surgery at all. I had mine done in Davao and it all went spectacularly well. If you want to drop me an email on [email]phil@morris.com.ph[/email] I can give you the complete low down on what took place, why and when.

      Cheers,

      Phil

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