I am wondering if i will have my full range of neck motion after the c-5, c6 acdf. Im not expecting it immediately after surgery of course, but I am hopeing that i will be able to look up, down, left, right, to its normal extent, minus the pain im having with moving now, prior to surgery.. Can anyone tell me if that range of motion in the neck comes back ? My doctor said that it would be a very minimal loss if any, BUT I would like to hear from people who had this done. I am worried that i will be constantly stiff, and not be able to bend or move head up or down , left, right.thanks ESTELLA
I had a C5-C7 ACDF in 2006 and really didn't loose much, if any, range of motion. I did buy a panoramic rear view mirror for my car so I never have to strain my neck left or right to get out of a spot (or when doing parallel parking). If you sat next to me at a dinner table it's not like I'd be unable to see you. In the first 2 months after surgery I moved cautiously but now sometimes I may position myself so I don't have to turn too far left or right, but not that the person sitting next to me would notice. There are days when my neck acts up and is a bit painful, but if that happens I just take over the counter medications and use a heating pad.
Oh, almost forgot, my job required me to travel a bit and my hubby and I travel 1-3x per year to see family as well so I purchased really good Eagle River neck pillows for travel (inflate and deflate easily and quickly). I didn't want to fall asleep on the plane and have my head hang forward for an extended period of time. Worth every penny,
My first ACDF was C5-C6 and I had no loss of ROM. It gradually got better and better as the months passed. Each person is different. I went back to work in 6 weeks and use my head a lot moving it in all directions.
After 3, two level Cervical Fusions with last one being both Anterior and Posterior, the plating on both sides, with rods and screws does limit some of my motion. I can still drive but use my mirrors much more to not cause excess pain by turning too far.
And for me, it's very painful to sit side-by-side with someone at a table or plane and keep turning my head to talk. I usually tell the person up front that I have had surgeries and if I have to look forward more, I promise I am still intently listening to them!
Also, I put a shower stool to be able to sit and shave my legs since the worst movement/action for my neck is looking down for a long period...so...I am limited mostly by pain, then secondly by the adhesions that have formed from the surgeries.
I do wear my neck brace, like now, when on the computer and at times to help 'remind' me not to turn so much and keep good posture to avoid more extreme pain later.
I had a C5-C7 fusion and plating (5&6 were congenital) that left me with loss of turning head fully to right side. I also have limited range when laying head to shoulder on both sides. I have adapted to the loss. The only thing that really caused problems was when driving and backing up. I have to twist to see over my right shoulder, but that is just a mild inconvenience for the privilege of less pain.