thank you for all your kind responses. i will try to address each of your posts: p313rk:
i am comforted to know that i am not alone with the left-sided weakness and numbness with my c5-6 herniation. recently, there has been some question about whether my more unusual symptoms can be attributed to another issue aside from my c-spine, so when anyone else describes something similar to my situation, it makes me feel less afraid of what's going on in my body.
i am right there with you about being scared sh**less of the surgery, but after 6.5 months of unsuccessful conservative treatment, and navigating our way through all the requisite phases of denial, anger, etc. etc., my husband and i are now arriving at the final stage--acceptance. after kissing a number of frogs, i now have a NS in whom i have as much faith as i can possibly have under the circumstances, so that is in place. like you, i am also desperate to get on with my life. this whole thing has taken an incredible toll on me and my family and i can't wait to have at least some semblance of my former life back. kindspirit:
thanks for sharing your cold feet experience with me. like i mentioned above, it puts my mind at ease to hear about other folks with atypical symptoms like mine. i also have lumbar issues--DDD and bulges at L4-5 and L5-S1 diagnosed in my mid-20s (i'm now 41), and a newly discovered T12-L1 bulge that is also slightly touching the cord which has caused me discomfort in my upper left thigh/hip region. i haven't had lumbar surgery since i've been able to keep that in check for the most part over the years, but this cervical stuff has pretty much knocked me down for the count. they haven't recommended ESIs for me for some reason. i think my NS feels that at this point, the only solution is to have surgery.
we have connected before, and i have certainly appreciated your input in the past. my foot actually felt cold to the touch.
there was not any mention of myelomalacia in my c-spine MRI reports (i had one in 3/09 and a 3T scan in 6/09), and the docs i've spoken with (NSs and neurologist) have said there is no change in the cord signal from what they could see. the c5-6 herniation has caused a 2.5mm indentation of my spinal cord which one NS said is not a major problem and that many people have MRIs manifesting that same degree of compression and are asymptomatic. another NS i saw said that people can have even less compression and have even more pronounced symptoms. after getting all this conflicting information i am at an absolute loss
all of these weird symptoms really scare me and some days i am nearly convinced that i have MS on top of the neck problems. at this point, the plan is to rule out any underlying neurological disorder and then schedule an ACDF to abate any further damage to my spinal cord. my next neurologist appt is 10/21, so we'll see what happens then.
thank you all again. this board is a life saver for me as i sit here trying to figure out which end is up.