Dr. Andy Stevens Presents Findings at Neurosurgical Society

Many more people suffering from spinal degenerative disc disease may be helped as a result of research by Harbin Clinic Neurosurgeon Dr. Andy Stevens. A recently presented study by Dr. Stevens demonstrates a safe and effective surgical treatment option for multilevel degenerative disease of the neck.

The research was presented in March 2011 at the 62nd Annual Meeting of the Southern Neurosurgical Society in Orlando, FL and the 27th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons/Congress of Neurological Surgeons Section on Disorders of the Spine and Peripheral Nerves in Phoenix, AZ. The title was “Multilevel Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion without Supplemental Posterior Instrumentation for Cervical Spondylotic Myelopathy.”

Advanced degenerative disc disease in the neck is a common medical problem that can cause pain and loss of function in the neck, arms, and legs. When 3 or more discs are involved, corrective surgery has traditionally involved a combined approach from the front (anterior) and back (posterior) of the neck. This large procedure can be highly morbid for patients.

Dr. Steven’s study demonstrates the benefits, safety, and efficacy of an anterior-only corrective procedure.

According to Dr. Stevens, “The goal was to evaluate the potential benefits of my anterior only technique versus more traditional front/back procedures. My study found statistically significant improvement in neurological function and fewer significant complications using the anterior-only approach.” Less blood loss, less post-operative pain, and fewer hospital days are other proposed benefits.

This study represents the largest reported series of patients undergoing anterior-only procedures for cervical spondylotic myelopathy at greater than 3 levels.