The concern I have is giving advice that could cause problems for others.
Consider that someone comes on here looking for answers, and they have a condition that requires immediate surgery...are they going to be given the opportunity to feel comfortable with the doctor. Consider someone that has been in an accident. I have been here for almost three years, and there have been a number of people in just that circumstance. Everyone doesn't have the opportunity to change doctors because they don't feel comfortable about the one they have.
For every person that posts here, there are hundreds, maybe even thousands that are just readers, that have the same or similar problems, but are afraid or don't need to post. I have found that it's important to try and be factual, and supportive in what we post. You have the potential to help a lot of people when you post information here.
This thread is one that is very ambiguos and opinionated. I have tried to defuse that, as it doesn't matter if the surgeon is a neuro or an ortho. To say point blank that a neuro is wrong, or vice versa. Then all the people who are seeing an ortho question whether that is the right choice or not. It is frightening enough to deal with the issues leading up to this surgery without questioning whether the doctor is right, because of reading a thread like this.
Both types of surgeons can do this surgery. It should be stated that way, and personal opinions should be left out.
Sorry, I am not trying to pick on you, or anyone else. Those that know me here know that I am only concerned for those who are dealing with this, and very concerned that we all be fair and helpful.
I started this thread and want to thank all of you who are trying to help me figure things out. I like to hear different opinions. I see the surgeon on Dec. 19th and I may have the surgery pretty quick after that (I have been told). Merry Xmas, eh? This guy is a bigwig at a big spinal disorders campus and they do alot of reseach there too. Everything I have read suggests he knows what to do. I dont have the energy or time anymore to go see a bunch of surgeons. I somehow cannot face it. My physiatrist is exceptional and I am really picky. He has referred me to this orthopedic spinal guy. We talked long and hard about how good this surgeon is. When I had my discogram, that Dr. almost mentioned this surgeon's name. So that's the one I will most likely go with. Thanks you ALL for your help. I really appreciate it!
Dennis, I guess I thought I was being pretty neutral in regard to neuro and ortho, I just started talking about the nerve studies because I am unfamiliar with ortho and don't know if they do it. I had talked about investigating both avenues, but its possible you see some bias in there that I don't see, which is easy to do when talking from one's own experiences. If you really want me to, I can edit my post. I take no offense. I'm cool
But Skziemann - you know I started to get really bad quite quickly - and being how you are suffering, you could ask your primary doc to make a call to the surgeons office telling them that he would like you to get you in sooner due to your condition if you are feeling that sense of urgency. It is possible and it was done for me after I talked to my doc about some symptoms. Good luck to you!
Don't take it personal. I didn't mean it that way.
I was generally asking all to be a little more careful.
If you go back to the beginning of this post, and read through each response I think you will see what I'm saying. I posted that my doc was an ortho, because all I saw were people saying it has to be a neuro...eventually, I came to the conclusion that we were going down a path that was dangerous for others reading this thread.
You were not the only one to say that you needed to feel comfortable...
I do struggle a bit with your opinion on the nerves at C5-6. I had the exact same surgery that Skziemann is going to have. Done by an ortho. My results have been excellent. I'm not sure that C5-6 has any more nerves or is in any way different than any of the other levels...or requires a neuro rather than an ortho. What is the basis for you feelings on this?
no no, I'm not takeing anything personally. No need to worry about that. We are both learning from this. I think really its probably just a misinterpretation of experiences or something like that...
I dunno I just remember that when I was in the conferance room with his nurse and she was setting up the actual surgery she was talking about how I might get a note or something from another doc's office that he works with durring surgery because.. at least I *thought* she said that it was because there was a major nerve going on in there... but when you look at the spine and its mechanics, they all have nerve right near the spinal cord I believe, so maybe she was talking about major nerves in the spine in general.. who knows, I didn't go to school for this stuff, lol.
But I do know that after surgery, I had like patches of burn/dried/scabed kinda skin and I asked what it was, and was told they were "neuro markers" which I guess is where they were monitoring my nerves durring surgery. I had them on my arms and I think I found one on my neck.. but not possitive on that one. She said I might find them near my ankles too, but I can't recall finding any there. I hate EMG's though, they hurt, but I guess in some cases its a neccessary thing - its just to see if they can detect any nerve damage that may have happened from the spinal problem. But neurosurgeon doesn't do it, a neruologist does. I didn't mind it durring surgery though, lol... didn't feel a thing - ha ha - The beauty of anesthia.
Last edited by PearlDoves; 11-21-2006 at 05:19 PM.
This is a very sensitive and critical area they are working on. Major nerves and the spinal cord. Years ago, they would never have attempted it. I think all of these operations have monitoring of the nerves.
I think all the levels in the neck have very similar structures and nerves, with the nerve bundles going to different areas of the body. C-1, is a bit different and maybe requires a different handling, I don't know. I haven't heard of any ACDF patients that have had C-1 worked on. Generally, C5-6 and or C6-7 are involved, this is the most common in DDD and aging issues. Some have had surgery before, and then have an adjacent level(s) fail. Genetic and accident victims are different and could have other levels involved.
it sounds like you found a good one there.the most important things when considering any surgery are that the person you are consulting with has ALOT of knowledge and experience with whatever procedure you are having done.it doesn't actually always come down to the type of surgeon,its what they have done and what they do that i use to make my decisions.i went thru three neurosurgeons to try and find the 'right' info about the cavernoma inside of my spinal cord.the first two gave me totally opposing info and both told me that cavernomas dont cause pain,they should have popped into my shoulder blade for ten minutes.the third was the charm.i asked them all outright,how much actual experience have you had doing cavernoma resections and also three pages of other questions.you need to be an informed "consumer" in order to find the best surgeon for your particular "job".
too many people just don't spend enough time thoroughly checking out all of their options and interviewing and consulting with even more than one surgeon,and some pay for that post op.
i am glad you found one that looks like a good prospect.start making a list of questions when you think of them,keep a piece of paper and a pen in a handy place so anytime you just suddenly think of a good question you can go immediately(if i didn't do it right that second i would forget the question)and just add it to that list.it really does help.i wish you alot of luck with this guy and hopefully things willgo your way and you will feel comfortable with him and his abilities.please keep us all posted onhow things go,K?take care,Marcia
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.