NEUROSURGERY BLOG

What are the Potential Risks of Neck Surgery?

Neck surgery encompasses a range of procedures to address various conditions that cause pain and discomfort in the cervical spine. While surgical interventions can offer significant relief to arm numbness, pain, tingling, or weakness and are often a turning point for patients struggling with severe neck issues, understanding the potential risks associated with these procedures is crucial.

Dr. Tim Johans, a distinguished neurosurgeon in Boise, emphasizes the importance of patient education on both the benefits and risks of neck surgery, ensuring individuals are well-informed before deciding on a treatment plan.

Dr. Johans is a Diplomat and Fellow of the American Board of Neurological Surgeons, board certified in Pain Management and is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Board of Neurological Surgeons. He began his neurosurgical career in 1988 and has been practicing in Boise since 1993. With these credentials, you can trust that Dr. Johans has the specialized knowledge and experience to provide you with an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment plan.

He is a dedicated family man who is heavily involved in his community, is involved in several hospital boards and committees and takes pride in being a faith-driven person. Dr. Johans has had a 3 level neck fusion and can discuss options from his vast personal experience.

We also work closely with other non-surgeons if necessary so that our patients can access all available resources when making decisions regarding their treatment plans. Additionally, our team is always prompt in responding to inquiries and addressing patients' concerns throughout their recovery process. Reviews on Google and Healthgrades show that many individuals who have sought treatment from Dr. Johans have found success in his treatments while feeling comfortable and supported throughout their experiences at our office.

What are Some Possible Complications of Neck Surgery?

Risks of not doing the surgery will be suffering with pain, loss of quality of life, permanent nerve and spinal cord damage resulting in numbness and weakness. The risks of surgery are bleeding, infection, stroke, death, lack of fusion, voice change, nerve damage, spinal cord injury. Because of these risks you should see a neurosurgeon with many years of low complications like Dr. Johans. This surgery is not for rookie surgeons.

Neck surgery carries general surgical risks, including infection, bleeding, and adverse reactions to anesthesia, though these complications remain relatively rare. The intricate nature of neck anatomy also introduces the risk of nerve damage, potentially resulting in ongoing pain, weakness, or numbness post-surgery.

Despite the high level of surgical precision achieved by experienced surgeons like Dr. Johans, the complexity of neck structures means that nerve-related complications, although uncommon, can occur.

Additionally, patients need to recognize that surgery may not always completely alleviate neck pain or may result in some degree of limited mobility in the area. Setting realistic expectations is key, as surgery is not a one-size-fits-all solution for neck pain.

Dr. Johans has a long-standing record of never having injured a spinal cord despite touching it hundreds of thousands of times. His risk of injuring nerve roots, causing any additional nerve damage from one of his surgeries is much lower than the national average. He causes minimal blood loss and has never had a patient contract a neck infection due to his procedures. A gross estimate of permanent nerve injury from a surgery performed by Dr. Johans is 0.06%.

Is It Normal To Feel Pain After Cervical Disc Replacement?

woman experiencing neck pain

What Is the Success Rate of Neck Surgery?

The success rate of neck surgery varies depending on the specific condition being treated. Dr. Johans has a very high success rate of >90% in preventing further pain, numbness, weakness, in the arm and stabilizing the neck with no complications. Procedures like cervical disc replacement aimed at correcting damaged or herniated discs and spinal stenosis, generally report high success rates, with many patients experiencing considerable pain relief in their arms, shoulders, and hands and enhanced mobility in their neck.

Factors such as the patient's overall health, the severity of the underlying condition, and compliance with recommended post-operative care and rehabilitation as instructed by Dr. Johans significantly influence surgical outcomes. While Dr. Johans' patients have benefited from his expertise and dedication, resulting in successful surgeries without severe complications like nerve sensation loss, excessive blood loss, or harmful infections, it's crucial to acknowledge that individual results can vary. Ongoing success often requires a commitment to lifestyle adjustments.

doctor examining a patient's spine

Should You Avoid Neck Surgery?

If you have severe arm pain, numbness or any weakness, you would be foolish to avoid evaluation and/or surgery if recommended.Dr. Johans advises that neck surgery should be considered only after less invasive, non-surgical treatment options-such as physical therapy, medication, or lifestyle modifications-have failed to provide sufficient relief. The decision to proceed with surgery should follow a comprehensive evaluation and a detailed discussion with Dr. Johans.

Factors he considers include the potential benefits and risks of the procedure, along with the patient's personal and professional lifestyle. In certain cases, particularly those involving severe nerve compression or spinal instability, surgery may represent the most effective strategy to prevent further damage and enhance the patient's quality of life. Dr. Johans is committed to guiding his patients through this decision-making process, ensuring they choose the best course of action for their specific circumstances.

What To Look For In A Spine Surgeon

Contact Dr. Johans for Disc Replacement in Boise

If cervical disc replacement is a procedure you're considering, Dr. Johans is here to guide you every step of the way. His commitment is to provide personalized care that aligns with your lifestyle and health objectives.

Reach out directly at (208) 327-5621 or initiate your journey to recovery by completing our patient questionnaire. Together, we'll explore the best treatment options tailored just for you.

Patient Questionnaire

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