Background: Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is one of the most beneficial surgical procedures to treat herniated discs. Micromotion is a small motion between the fused adjacent cervical segments. This study compares the micromotion in different cervical movements following ACDF with anterior plating. The data can further enhance cervical stabilization and provide safer long-term results of ACDF. This study examines the degree of micromotion after the ACDF procedure with anterior plating.
Methods: This was a retrospective descriptive study. The study subjects were patients who underwent ACDF with anterior plating at National Brain Center Hospital, Indonesia between February 2019 and January 2022. All patients who were treated with ACDF were included in the study.
Results: There was a total of 41 patients who underwent ACDF surgery from February 2019 to January 2022 meeting the criteria. The shift of the cervical intervertebral disc angles in the flexion position was in the approximate range of 5.25o – 6.83o. In the extension position, the angle shift was in the approximate range of 2.75o – 4.79o. The cervical vertebrae level with the least alteration was C3 – C4 and with the most alteration was C6 – C7 for flexion and C4 – C5 for extension.
Conclusion: C5 – C6 is the most common site for disc herniation. The stabilization of ACDF could still be increased further. The findings of our evaluation of C5 – C6 are in line with previous studies calculating the flexion-extension range. Micromotion of the adjacent cervical vertebral segment still occurred even after the ACDF procedure and anterior plating. Other stabilization techniques could potentially improve structural outcomes.
Keywords: Anterior cervical approach, anterior cervical discectomy and fusion, cervical range of motion, cervical spine, herniated disc