Cervical Degenerative Disease

Abstract

Cervical degenerative disease, the most common cause of spinal cord impairment worldwide, affects up to 180 of every 100,000 people, and its treatment comprises a large portion of surgical spinal pathology. Cervical degenerative disease encompasses several pathologic processes such as cervical disk derangement (herniated or protruding disks), spondylosis, and ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament; these processes can result in symptomatic cervical radiculopathy and/or myelopathy. A wide range of treatment options, both surgical and nonsurgical, exists for symptomatic cervical degenerative disorders, depending on the specific compressive pathology. Surgical treatment is typically recommended for patients with myelopathy, and for those with persistent pain or worsening neurologic findings. Cervical fusion, disk arthroplasty, and laminoplasty are all commonly used, effective techniques, each with specific advantages and disadvantages. Complications and sequelae of surgical intervention for cervical degenerative disease are adjacent-segment disease, pseudarthrosis, neurologic injury, postoperative kyphosis, and infection. It is important to understand the epidemiology, pathophysiology, diagnosis, and management of cervical degenerative disease and its complications.

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