gms | German Medical Science

129. Kongress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Chirurgie

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Chirurgie

24.04. - 27.04.2012, Berlin

Returning to sport after cervical arthroplasty in young patients with a soft disc herniation

Meeting Abstract

  • Andreas Reinke - Klinikum rechts der Isar, TU München, Neurochirurgie, München
  • Michael Behr - Klinikum rechts der Isar, TU München, Neurochirurgie, München
  • Alexander Preuss - Klinikum rechts der Isar, TU München, Neurochirurgie, München
  • Jimmy Villard - Klinikum rechts der Isar, TU München, Neurochirurgie, München
  • Bernhard Meyer - Klinikum rechts der Isar, TU München, Neurochirurgie, München
  • Florian Ringel - Klinikum rechts der Isar, TU München, Neurochirurgie, München

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Chirurgie. 129. Kongress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Chirurgie. Berlin, 24.-27.04.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. Doc12dgch196

doi: 10.3205/12dgch196, urn:nbn:de:0183-12dgch1966

Veröffentlicht: 23. April 2012

© 2012 Reinke et al.
Dieser Artikel ist ein Open Access-Artikel und steht unter den Creative Commons Lizenzbedingungen ( Er darf vervielfältigt, verbreitet und öffentlich zugänglich gemacht werden, vorausgesetzt dass Autor und Quelle genannt werden.



Introduction: For the treatment of a soft disc herniation in the cervical spine the arthroplasty is often indicated in young patients. Especially this group of young patients has a high activity level with frequent exercising. However, the literature shows no data about the chances for a return to sports after arthroplasty of the cervical spine. Therefore, the present study aimed to adress this question in a prospective observational design.

Materials and methods: 47 patients treated since May 2006. Clinical status and radiographic parameters were evaluated in the follow up. In addition, neck disability index, VAS and a questionnaire concerning athlete aspects (kind of sports, activity level, time of return, frequency of exercise, discomfort during activity, modified Tegner activity score) was analyzed.

Results: A total of 47 (f=24, m=23) patients with a single level soft disc herniation were treated with the Prestige® cervical disc. The average age was 40.45 years and mean follow-up was 22 months. Mean neck disability index was 13% (no/mild disability) and mean VAS was 2.6 postoperative. Two professionals (luge, bobsleigh athlete), 20 semi-professionals, 20 hobby athletes and 5 without any sports activity were operated. Mean time to resumption of sporting activity was 11 weeks after surgery. Both professionals participated in the Olympic Games after their operation and all semi-professionals recovered to their previous activity level. 105% of the hobby athletes recovered to sport (20 plus 1 initially “non-sportive”). Mean frequency per week was 2.9 preoperative and 2.7 postoperative. Mean duration of activity was 5.4 preoperative and 5.1 postoperative hours per week. The tegner-score was 3.8 preoperative as well as postoperative. Only 36% of all athletes were handicapped in their sporting activity by pain or cervical flexibility.

Conclusion: In this first series assessing sports in patients with cervical arthroplasty we could detect that the implantation of a cervical disc prothesis does not prohibit sporting activities. Even world cup class in high impact sports is possible. All patients recovered to previous activities in appropriate intensity level.