Disc Replacement Specialist

Lindsey Ross, MD -  - Neurosurgeon

Lindsey Ross, MD

Neurosurgeon & Fellowship Trained Spine Surgeon located in Los Angeles, CA

Replacing a disc in your spine with an artificial device is a lasting solution for symptoms of a herniated disc that don’t go away with noninvasive solutions. At her offices in the Beverly Grove neighborhood of Los Angeles and Torrance Memorial Medical Center in Torrance, California, Lindsey Ross, MD, offers total disc replacement surgery to alleviate pain and numbness while preserving the mobility of your spine. To learn more about the treatment, call either of Dr. Ross’s offices or book an appointment online today.

Disc Replacement Q & A

What is spinal disc replacement?

Spinal disc replacement is a surgical motion preservation technique. During the surgery, Dr. Ross carefully replaces a faulty disc in your spine with an artificial disc. This artificial disc functions in exactly the same way as the original disc: it absorbs shock when you move or flex your spine and keeps a space between vertebrae.

Dr. Ross specializes in total disc replacement, which replaces a disc in your spine in its entirety. Your artificial disc consists of two plates made from either metal or plastic. One attaches to the vertebrae above the original disc, and the other attaches to the vertebrae below. 

Some artificial discs include a soft plastic material between the two. In either case, the two plates are smooth and rounded, so they can glide against each other smoothly when you move your back.

What can disc replacement treat?

Dr. Ross may recommend a disc replacement if you have degenerative disc disease or a herniated disc. For some people, herniated discs cause few or no symptoms at all. For others, herniated discs compress nearby nerves and cause severe pain and other symptoms. Your symptoms might include:

  • Pain 
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Immobility

Dr. Ross conducts imaging tests like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans or discography using an injectable dye with an X-ray or computed tomography (CT) scan. Typically, she encourages you to try noninvasive treatment approaches for back or neck pain related to disc dysfunction first. 

Dr. Ross might recommend disc replacement if your symptoms last for six months or longer and other treatments, like physical therapy, injections, and medications, have not successfully treated them. Artificial disc replacement works for cervical spinal discs in your neck and lumbar spinal discs in your lower back.

How should I prepare for spinal disc replacement?

Following your preoperative instructions from Dr. Ross can help you prepare for a successful surgery and minimize your chances of surgery-related complications. Dr. Ross sits down with you for a comprehensive consultation and physical exam beforehand to ensure the surgery is safe for you. You should be sure to list the medications you take at this time, too.

Before the surgery, Dr. Ross may advise you to:

  • See your primary care physician to make sure it is safe for you to have surgery
  • Stop taking certain medications that make your blood thinner
  • Adjust your dosage of certain medications
  • Remove makeup, jewelry, and nail polish
  • Bring an overnight bag if you need it

Dr. Ross tells you how long you can expect the operation to take and how long you have to stay in the hospital or at home in recovery, so you can make the accommodations you need. Dr. Ross often uses state of the art instruments and a professional team to make your recovery shorter.

If you have prolonged back pain from disc degeneration or herniation, call the office of Lindsey Ross, MD, for a disc replacement consultation today.