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Lower Spine News

Looking Back: Results of Artificial Disc Replacement

Researchers at the Spine Center in Germany have teamed up with orthopedic surgeons at Yale University. The goal was to assess the safety and effectiveness of the Prodisc implant.

This implant is an artifical disc replacement. Such implants are slowly replacing spinal fusion for back pain. Motion is preserved. The vertebrae above and below the level of the implant don't break down as they often do after spinal fusion.

All patients had the Prodisc implant at one-single lumbar level. Results were measured using patient satisfaction and pain levels. Use of medication and any complications were also included.

The results of this study show major improvement three months after the surgery. The good results were still present at the two-year check-up. The authors think the 96 percent satisfaction rate is a direct result of three things: 1) careful patient selection, 2) quality of the implant, and 3) experienced surgeon.


Rudolf Bertagnoli, MD, et al. The Treatment of Disabling Single-Level Lumbar Discogenic Low Back Pain with Total Disc Arthroplasty Utilizing the Prodisc Prosthesis. In Spine. October 1, 2005. Vol. 30. No. 19. Pp. 2230-2236.

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