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Old 04-27-2010, 01:21 PM   #1
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c3 c4 Problem causing lower body symptoms?

Hi Folks, this is all a bit new to me and I feel I need to talk to people who are in the same boat or have experienced spinal problems.I have only recently been diagnosed with what my consultant called a "Spinal Stroke". It is cervical compression at c3 / c4 level. It all started with a tingling / burning sensation in my left foot which has gradually spread up my leg to include my buttocks and left side.My right leg is also affected now. I have constipation and bladder (urine retention) problems and no sensation below the waist. This all started to happen after a minor hernia op late Jan this year. I was a fit healthy guy with an active job prior to all this. My consultant has offered me a ACDF operation to attempt to "prevent further deterioration". I have none of the normal symptoms I read about affecting my arms or hands.

My consultant says it is highly unusual to only display symptoms in the lower body with a problem at the c3 c4 level. Has anyone heard of a similar case as I am trying to decide if this op is the best way forward for me? It is only two weeks away. I am going for a second opinion this week but would appreciate any information as I am getting nowhere trawling the internet. Thanks in anticipation.

 
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:56 PM   #2
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Re: c3 c4 Problem causing lower body symptoms?

My Mom had a c5/6 bone spur with ONLY lower body symptoms. It all depends on what part of the spinal cord (spinal tracts) are effected.

I'm sorry you are going through this!

 
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Old 04-27-2010, 04:26 PM   #3
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Re: c3 c4 Problem causing lower body symptoms?

If you've had a spinal stroke then whatever is pressing on your spinal cord has stopped the blood flow or created a clot in part of you spinal cord so you may be paralyzed for good in areas now affected. What the doc seems to be saying is that if you have those 2 vertebrae fused immediately, you can avoid it getting worse. And since it's at C3-4, you could be looking at total body paralysis including breathing.

But there is good news. If you can get whatever is causing the problem out of there, you might be able to regain use and feeling in those areas with lots of PT. Depends on how extensive the damage is and if the brain can rewire the areas affected through the cord. I was paralyzed on my left side after surgery and although it took a lot of work, I got most of it back. Permanent problems with my left arm but otherwise I'm pretty good. Just took a lot of work for over 2 1/2 years but it was worth it.

Whatever you do, don't wait to make this decision. If you've had one stroke from compression, you will have more if it isn't corrected. My bother-in-law had an extensive lower cord stroke and was instantly paralyzed from the waist down. Never got anything back but still lived a good life for many, many years and died of something else all together. So even if you don't get it back, you'll be fine. Just one more challenge in life.

sorry for your situation............Jenny

 
Old 04-27-2010, 05:01 PM   #4
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Re: c3 c4 Problem causing lower body symptoms?

Thanks for this Jenny. I am hopeful that I do recover. My consultant is unable to tell me if what has happenned to me is reversable or not? I live in hope at the moment. Thanks again.

 
Old 04-27-2010, 05:04 PM   #5
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Re: c3 c4 Problem causing lower body symptoms?

Thanks for your reply. How is your mom now? Did she have an op?

 
Old 04-27-2010, 09:13 PM   #6
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Re: c3 c4 Problem causing lower body symptoms?

Yes, she recovered remarkably well after surgery. She had immediate improvements from the surgery itself. Her prognosis was probable wheelchair- at most walking with a walker. She excelled past that and ditched the cane a couple of years ago. Still has odd sensations in her legs with some pain, but she is overall awesome. Acupuncture and physical therapy helped immensely.
Thank you for asking~I wish you the best

 
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