Ruptured Neck Disc

Ruptured Neck Disc

When people get older they can expect to have some health problems which were not a concern in their youth.  This can include a ruptured disc.  In fact, a disc rupturing is very likely to happen, especially to men over 40 years of age.  When this happens, a common place for the disc to rupture is in the neck area.  This is because the neck is subjected to a lot of movement and the discs in this region are under a lot more stress than the other ones.  Another contributing factor is the weight of the head which is directly supported by the neck.

What is a Ruptured Neck Disc?

When a disc ruptures in the neck it means that the contents of a disk have leaked out and are now applying pressure on the nerves and the spinal cord. When this happens in the neck it can lead to back pain but also pain in the shoulder area which can travel all the way down to the tip of the arm. Aside from pain the patient can expect to feel numbness and a tingling sensation in his fingers, as well as muscle weakness. The immediate course of action to take is to undergo therapy with both hot and cold compresses and to take anti-inflammatory drugs and painkillers.

If therapy and medication do not work then the best option available is surgery. When performing surgery on a ruptured neck disc the goal is to provide spinal decompression which will take the pressure off the nerves and spinal cord and alleviate the pain. Other than spinal decompression a technique used frequently is a spinal fusion. This involves taking two pieces of the vertebrae and fusing them together, thus creating one solid piece.

Ruptured Neck Disc Procedure

When you have a pain in your neck it can be cause by a ruptured neck disc. In these cases the doctor must make an incision and alleviate the pressure that is being exerted onto the spinal nerves or the spinal cord itself. Traditionally, this is done through an open-surgery like a discectomy. However, modern advances in technology allow for less invasive procedures like the VATS technique. This one uses video cameras on the ends of tubes to assist in the operation. It allows for a greater precision while reducing the size of the incisions made. This will also allow for a faster recovery period.

Costs of a Ruptured Neck Disc

Depending on the procedure that you will need you will either be covered by the NHS or not. If you choose to go to a private clinic you can expect different prices for different operations. Some procedures like a spinal fusion are very expensive and can range between £60,000 and £70,000, while a discectomy is less expensive at around £15,000. If you go with a private clinic pick one that uses experienced and respected surgeons like Ramsay Health Care Clinic or Nuffield Health.

Having problems with your neck is not the end of the world. A lot of people can expect to suffer from a ruptured neck disc in their lifetimes. The key is to start treatment immediately and to get the surgery if it is the only option available.