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Papers of the Week

2020 Mar 19



[Lumbar disc prosthesis, a high risk treatment for low back pain.]


Försth P, Gerdhem P, Svensson O
Lakartidningen. 2020 Mar 19; 117.
PMID: 32242909.


When surgery is needed for chronic low back pain, replacement of the degenerated and potential pain generating disc with a prosthesis often gives good short-term pain relief. However, there is no evidence of the clinical superiority of prosthesis compared with other treatments. Disc prosthesis is associated with considerable risks of late severe complications, especially in revision surgery. The method has been suggested as a treatment for young active patients, which is highly questionable considering  the risk of late severe adverse events and complex revision surgery. Globally the method is declining and in many health care financing models it is not an approved treatment. In Sweden, the use of disc prosthesis is increasing.