Artificial Disc Replacement (in the Lumbar Spine)


This surgery treats a bad vertebral disc in your lower back. It replaces the bad disc with an artificial one. The new disc will let your spine bend and twist. For some, this surgery is an alternative to spinal fusion.


To begin, you are put to sleep. The surgeon makes an incision in your abdomen and clears a path to your spine.


The bad disc is carefully cleared away. Your vertebrae are spread apart, and metal plates are attached to them. Then, the center of the artificial disc (called the “bearing”) is put between these plates. The bearing holds your vertebrae in their normal positions. It can relieve pressure on compressed nerves.


When the surgery is done, the incision is closed and bandaged. You’ll be watched closely as you wake up. Your surgeon will tell you when it’s safe to leave the hospital. Follow your surgeon’s instructions for recovery.