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Old 11-18-2003, 01:14 PM   #1
Senior Member
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Overland Park, KS
Posts: 172
Mag311 HB User
Talking Minimally Invasive Surgery: Cervical Fusion

Hello All!
I hope all is well or as good as they can be with everyone! I wanted to say thanks and to share my story with all of you. I have been visiting this board and reading everyone's post when I first learned that I needed surgery. This board has given me confidence about my surgery and has supported me. So thanks!
I am 23 and was involved in a car crash 3 years ago. A drunk driver hit my friends car while I was a passenger (I know think before I get into cars drunk or with drunk drivers). I was diagnosed with a herniated disc at c6-C7 and I found it was causing pain though a discogram I had in March. I came to the realization after three years of pain and all sorts of therapy to go ahead with the surgery. I would regret not taking a chance of getting rid of this pain I have had to live with. Anyway, my best friends dad happened to be an orthopedic surgeon (and a really good one) so I went to go consult him about my problem. He performed a cervical discectomy with fusion at c6-c7. He performed this surgery using minimally invasive techniques. At first I didn't know how someone could be minimally invasive about doing surgery on your spine...but now I am amazed. I had the surgery on October 29th and the next day I was up and talking. Talking well and eating well. I thought I would be hoarse and on a liquid diet..but I was eating solid foods the next day. The pain level was not as bad as I thought I was. It was easily controled by percocet. My main pain was the tightness in my chest and back (I guess they move your muscles around a lot to get where they need to be). Also, my scare is very minimal. It is two inches and was cut and sewn so good that I might not even have a scar. I am still wearing a neck brace but only as a reminder. I haven't been able to tell if the surgery really has helped or not because of the soreness of my muscles but I pray that it did...if it didn't work I am glad that my I did it and took a chance and that I had a minimally invasive surgery. I just wanted everyone to know that it is out there and to look for it. It is worth it...and it is amazing. I know all my friends and family are amazed. I even thought that maybe my surgeon tricked me and didn't really perform the surgery...but the x-rays prove that i did. Goodluck to everyone! I will be looking at the posts so I can help any in need of advice or support!

 
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Old 11-19-2003, 09:57 PM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 7
grace54cl HB User
Re: Minimally Invasive Surgery: Cervical Fusion

[QUOTE=Mag311]Hello All!
I hope all is well or as good as they can be with everyone! I wanted to say thanks and to share my story with all of you. I have been visiting this board and reading everyone's post when I first learned that I needed surgery. This board has given me confidence about my surgery and has supported me. So thanks!
I am 23 and was involved in a car crash 3 years ago. A drunk driver hit my friends car while I was a passenger (I know think before I get into cars drunk or with drunk drivers). I was diagnosed with a herniated disc at c6-C7 and I found it was causing pain though a discogram I had in March. I came to the realization after three years of pain and all sorts of therapy to go ahead with the surgery. I would regret not taking a chance of getting rid of this pain I have had to live with. Anyway, my best friends dad happened to be an orthopedic surgeon (and a really good one) so I went to go consult him about my problem. He performed a cervical discectomy with fusion at c6-c7. He performed this surgery using minimally invasive techniques. At first I didn't know how someone could be minimally invasive about doing surgery on your spine...but now I am amazed. I had the surgery on October 29th and the next day I was up and talking. Talking well and eating well. I thought I would be hoarse and on a liquid diet..but I was eating solid foods the next day. The pain level was not as bad as I thought I was. It was easily controled by percocet. My main pain was the tightness in my chest and back (I guess they move your muscles around a lot to get where they need to be). Also, my scare is very minimal. It is two inches and was cut and sewn so good that I might not even have a scar. I am still wearing a neck brace but only as a reminder. I haven't been able to tell if the surgery really has helped or not because of the soreness of my muscles but I pray that it did...if it didn't work I am glad that my I did it and took a chance and that I had a minimally invasive surgery. I just wanted everyone to know that it is out there and to look for it. It is worth it...and it is amazing. I know all my friends and family are amazed. I even thought that maybe my surgeon tricked me and didn't really perform the surgery...but the x-rays prove that i did. Goodluck to everyone! I will be looking at the posts so I can help any in need of advice or support![/QUOTE]
Hi Meg,
What did he do? You are the only one I have read about that is not really suffering like the rest. What all did he do? Did you have the disk removed and replaced, with metal plate? and were there any bone spurs to remove? and were did he fuse c5 and c6? Tell me. I'd like to know who worked on you and maybe go there myself! I have to have the procedure done as I have also been in constant pain for the last 3 years and finally have had enuf! Please let me know how extensive your surgery was. I have to have bone removed from my hip to fuse c5 and c6 and disk will also be replaced with titanium plate and screws and bone spurs will also be removed. From what I have been reading, everyone has been in a lot of pain afterward.

 
Old 11-20-2003, 12:53 PM   #3
Senior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Overland Park, KS
Posts: 172
Mag311 HB User
Re: Minimally Invasive Surgery: Cervical Fusion

Hello Grace!
I am not sure what he did 100% but I do know how he went about everything. Since I am only 23 and my body heals fast we did not get bone from my hip. He used a mixture(that is bone like but comes from a bottle) and then used a little of my bone(that I believe he got from my vertabre). It is a very little amount of my bone so no big deal. He mixed that up and made some kinda of mixture and that is what he put in my threaded cage. He uses a ray threaded fusion cage...which is another thing that he does differently. I know they did a two inch incision at the base of my neck going sideways. This incision is bareley noticable and I am amazed. I had to do my follow-up with a different surgeon and he was very impressed. He took x-rays of my neck because he wanted to see my doctors work because he was so amazed! I know they removed the bad disc and then scraped the tops and bottom of the enclosure and poped in the threaded cage that is made of titanium. I had no pain that was involving my incision. My main pain was my chest and inbetween my shoulder blades. I think this is normal because they have to move your vertabre and all your muscles to get to your spine (since they go in the front way). I was on morphine for the first whole day and thru the night. I needed it...but it wasn't horrific pain where I thought I was going to die. It hurt...but it was liveable. The next day I went home in the morning because I was walking and talking so well I had a prescription for percocet and I took two every 4 hours and that seemed to work. Thta was only for a week. The second week I was taking 2 percocets a day...and now I am just talking Ultram and Maybe some vicodin. I still wear the neck brace as a reminder. Honestly, again I don't know if it worked. I still have the same pain...but from my understanding is that it takes sometime for those nerves to heal and become normal...so I will just wait. By the way...his name is Dr. William Reed in Overland Park, KS. He has opened his own speciality hospital here and he is amazing and so is his staff. He is a wonderful surgeon. There are only 15-20 minimally invasive surgeons in the country and he is one of them. He is also going to be doing the disc replacement surgerys soon. He is worth checking out. Good luck!

 
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