Patient Resources

Is Disk Replacement Right for You?

Patient Selection

Determination of which patients are good candidates for disk replacement surgery is one of the most important factors in achieving a successful outcome.  Through our extensive experience with this technology as well as our keen understanding of the biomechanics of the spine, we can confidently determine  during our initial evaluation which patients are ideal candidates for disk replacement.


One of the many advantages disc replacement has over fusion is a much faster overall  recovery.  Many patients can leave the hospital within 24 hours of having the procedure and return to light activity with 48 hours. Typically we allow patients to return to full activity, including non-contact sporting activities within 4-6 weeks. In contrast, fusion patients require 3 months of activity restrictions.

Costs Associated with Disk Replacement

There are several costs with total disk replacement (TDR).  Fortunately, most insurance programs cover the fees associated with disk replacement. Occasionally, your insurance will cover only some or part of the fees associated with disk replacement.  If your insurance will not cover some or all of these fees, often times we can provide you with a total "out of pocket" cost for the procedure.   Our team has years of experience working with insurance plans and patients to ensure you have the best available options for your condition at a reasonable cost.  Importantly, disc replacement surgery is often less expensive than similar type fusion operations.  

Some of the costs associated with disk replacement include but are not limited to:

Cost of consultative appointment with Disk Replacement Specialists.

Additional Radio-graphic Testing: 

  • All patients must have an MRI within 1 year of surgery, with X-rays including Flexion and Extension views.
  • Occasionally, nerve testing (EMG/NCV) are needed to rule out other causes of symptoms.

Pre-Operative Laboratory Testing: 

  • Blood samples for laboratory testing, with chest X-ray or EKG for select patients.

Professional Anesthesiology Fee: 

  • Fee for the physician that will put you under anesthesia for surgery.

Surgeon/Co-Surgeon Fee: 

  • Fee for the physician(s) that will perform surgery to implant the artificial disk.

Follow-Up Care: 

  • For all surgical cases, the general post-operative care (clinic visits including examination and review of X-rays) is included as part of the surgical fee for 3 months (90-day global period) after your surgical procedure.  
  • The may be additional costs to treat the rare complications of surgery that are not included in original surgery. 
  • During follow up visits, additional X-rays are frequently recommended, which are not included in the surgical fee; while your surgeon reviews these X-rays during the 90-day global period at no additional cost; the facility performing the X-rays will charge a fee to perform them and if additional radiological interpretation is needed, additional fees will apply.