Signs That You Need or Don’t Need Neck Surgery

If you are dealing with frequent, severe neck pain, you are hardly alone. Discomfort and irritation in this part of the body are common, especially among adults. You may seek various methods to find relief, including visits to the chiropractor. In the most serious situations, you may need surgery. It’s helpful to understand when these invasive procedures might be necessary and when other treatments can provide the help you require.

When Surgery Isn’t Necessary

Usually, surgery is a last resort when it comes to solving neck pain. As with any operation, neck surgery has some risks and possible side effects. Therefore, doctors will look for other solutions first. Medication and physical therapy are often the first strategies to combat conditions in the neck. When these tactics are successful, you probably won’t need surgery. Many patients choose to visit the chiropractor to control or eliminate neck pain. Chiropractic adjustments can be effective in helping you find a better range of motion, mobility and flexibility in this area. If you go through a few rounds of adjustments and no longer have pain or can resume your normal activities without difficulty, you probably won’t need surgery.

When Surgery Might Be Necessary

Therapy, including adjustments, alone isn’t always enough to solve your neck issues. Significant damage to your neck, such as a compressed or herniated disc, is often only addressed by surgery. To confirm the severity of your condition, the doctor or chiropractor will take X-rays or an MRI to assess the damage. Surgery can repair joint, tendon and cartilage injuries. Different processes can even place artificial vertebrae in your neck. Another situation where surgery is likely necessary would be if you had fractured vertebrae. This does not include a compression fracture, which therapy can usually repair.


If you do have neck surgery, make sure you follow your doctor’s orders during your recovery period. Certain kids of surgeries require limited movement and physical activity for several weeks. However, your chiropractor may recommend resuming adjustments shortly after your operation. Regular chiropractic adjustments can complement the surgery and help make your recovery complete and successful. If you are seeing a chiropractor for the first time, inform him or her whether you have had recent surgery.

If neck pain is limiting your abilities, talk to a neck pain doctor in Frederick, MD, like from Pain & Spine Specialists of Maryland, LLC, about your options. Adjustments can help you feel well and cope with the discomfort. In other situations, you may need surgery.