Lumbar Artificial Discs


Dr. Luis Manuel Tumialán can provide pain relief and improved range of motion with lumbar artificial disc placement surgery. During this procedure. Dr. Tumialán creates an abdominal incision to access the anterior spine, where he removes the damaged disc and replaces it with an artificial disc. To learn more about replacing a damaged disc with a lumbar artificial disc, contact Dr. Tumialán's Phoenix, AZ, office today.

Candidates for Lumbar Artificial Discs

Lumbar artificial disc placement can restore a patient's range of motion and relieve painful symptoms caused by herniated, damaged, or degenerative discs. Spinal discs, which consist of a tire-shaped outer ring (annulus fibrosus) and a soft, gelatinous center (nucleus pulposus) function as shock absorbers in the spine, protecting vertebrae from rubbing against one another. They also allow for flexibility between the vertebrae and serve as ligaments to hold the vertebrae together.

If damaged or worn, the annulus fibrosus can rip open, allowing the inner nucleus pulposus tissue to spill out. This causes pressure on surrounding tissues, including the nerves. When these nerve tissues are compressed, it can result in pain, loss of function, numbness, and weakness. Dr. Tumialán can remove damaged discs and relieve excess pressure with microdiscectomy. After the disc is removed, Dr. Tumialán may recommend replacing it with a lumbar artificial disc made of chromium cobalt.

Good candidates for lumbar artificial discs are patients who have already had a microdiscectomy and are experiencing pain. Artificial lumbar discs are rarely administered as a treatment. In most cases, patients will also undergo surgery to correct the issue causing disc degeneration.

blonde woman smiling

With lumbar disc replacement, patients can retain more motion than with spinal fusion surgery.

Lumbar Artificial Disc Replacement Surgery

To place a lumbar artificial disc, Dr. Tumialán will first make an incision in the abdomen. Once this incision has been made, he will bypass the organs (temporarily displacing them if necessary) to access the spine. Next, he will carefully remove any degenerative, damaged, or herniated disc tissue. He will then place the artificial disc in the resulting void, secure it in place, and close the patient's incisions using stitches.

The Advantages of Lumbar Artificial Discs

Spinal fusion surgery has long been the standard treatment for patients who have exhausted all of their nonsurgical options and are still experiencing back pain. During spinal fusion, Dr. Tumialán joins two adjacent vertebrae with a plate and screws, and places bone graft tissue between them for further stabilization. While this treatment does stabilize the spine, it can cause restricted movement, as the two vertebrae begin to function as a single unit without the flexibility that the natural disc once provided.

With lumbar disc replacement, patients can retain more motion than with spinal fusion surgery. Lumbar discs are specially designed to allow for flexibility between the vertebrae, and are not at risk of bursting. Most often, patients will also require additional surgery to correct problems with the joint or vertebrae that are contributing to disc degeneration and pain.

Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Tumialán

To learn more about lumbar artificial disc replacement, contact Dr. Tumialán's office today. Our team would be happy to answer your questions.

Contact Us

If you are struggling with pain, weakness, loss of function, or other symptoms of spinal complications, contact Dr. Tumialán's office today.

Spine-Talks Featuring Dr. Tumialán