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Old 12-02-2006, 07:46 AM   #1
SKZ SKZ is offline
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Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

For those of you that had ACDF, did you have alot of muscle spasms before your surgery? I have had them for close to 5 yrs. in the neck, traps and upper back. NOTHING helps them. I have read on here that immediately after surgery you can get bad muscle spasms. Is there any hope of my muscle spasms ever going away AFTER the surgery? I have tried trigger point injections...but they only help for a short time. (man those hurt, but you get usd to them!). I also tried Intra-muscular stimulation (IMS), which is a dry needling technique without lidocaine or anything. Its supposed to help break the spasm. (which didnt work and hurt ALOT more than trigger point injections). Muscle relaxers dont work either. I guess I have a TON of "guarding" from all the disc and arthritis issues. I guess what I am asking is....after ACDF is it possible for the spasms and hardness (oh boy those trapezius!) to ever go away, at least when everything is fused?
Thanks!

 
Old 12-02-2006, 08:31 AM   #2
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Re: Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

I have had some spasms here and there, not really a big problem for me, it suppose to go away after time. If its really bad, they can probably give you a muscle relaxer or something like valium until it subsides, along with whatever pain meds you will get after surgery.

 
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Old 12-02-2006, 08:58 AM   #3
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Re: Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

Thanks for the response. What I am asking about (but didnt make myself clear. heh) is might I be lucky enough for the spasms to finally go away when things heal from my surgery?

 
Old 12-02-2006, 09:19 AM   #4
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Re: Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

They might go away, but it may take a while. Maybe around 8 weeks, or over the course of the coming months. Cross my fingers for you.

My PT did this technique called "efflurage", it is really light light strokes, repeated over and over along the sides of my cervical cord and down to the bottom edge of my shoulder blades. In the beginning I was ultra sensitive and it would set the nerves off, after a month, I could tolerate it and the mucle spasm settled down enough for me to ignore it and for the muscle relaxer to actually help. You might ask about this.

 
Old 12-02-2006, 09:28 AM   #5
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Re: Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

I remember years ago doing that in Lamaze class when i was pregnant with my 26 yr old.
I am hoping since alot of my spasm is that "guarding" stuff, that once it doesnt have a huge reason to guard the neck, it might settle down, finally.
What are you....addicted to this board or something? hehe

 
Old 12-04-2006, 07:31 AM   #6
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Re: Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

Muscle spasms are a pretty common complaint both before and after ACDF.

I had them in my shoulders for years before the surgery.

After, not only do you notice them, they seem to get worse for many during recovery, partly because your body is so used to them, and also due to the healing process. The spasms are increased because your body tries to "protect" the area where the surgery was.

Once I started PT after surgery, I was gradually able to get control of them. It took work and training (I had to re-learn proper posture, etc.).

Now, a regular excercise routine eliminates the problem. I can tell when I miss a session, as the spasms start to rear their ugly head.

There are tricks to improve things during recovery. First you need to understand and identify that the pain is caused by spasms. Many tend to blame the pain on something wrong with the surgery, but it's usually caused by spasms. You need to apply hot and cold packs on the site of the spasm and the area that is causing them (neck). Alternate hot and cold for about 15 minutes each every hour or so. I found muscle rubs to help too.

Dennis

Last edited by dennisgb; 12-04-2006 at 07:32 AM.

 
Old 12-04-2006, 03:14 PM   #7
SKZ SKZ is offline
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Re: Muscle Spasms (neck and upper back) after your surgery?

I hope your instincts are correct about the steroid mylopathy. Those steroids are mighty intense things. (they give me the worse insomnia ever, make me cranky and edgy, and God knows what they are doing to you at the moment).
Oh yea, and bloated too.

 
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