Re: 2 yrs. after 2 level fusion C5-7 now bulges at c3 and t1
Hi Swartzie. I saw that no one has answered you and thought I'd jump in and offer some info if nothing more.
If you have a bad problem in your neck, the probability that you also have similar problems in your lower back is very high. Arthritis is the most common problem and if it hits the spine, it hits the entire spine, not just a part of it. And once you have bone spurs developing, they destabilize the entire spine. So I doubt your cervical surgery had anything to do with your current lumbar problems. More like the cervical warned you that you have spine problems and needed to watch the entire thing.
As for the new bulges, that is what happens with fusions and why they are trying so hard to develop new surgeries that don't use fusions. There is a new one called a laminoplasty but it is still not used very often and few neurosurgeons do it. It relieves stenosis without fusion.
But once you have a fusion, it sets you up for more problems. The spine is designed to move and when you take part of it and make it no longer move, then the moving parts will still move and often, even more. And presto! you have another herniation. It comes with the territory and the docs never tell you that the #1 complication of fusion surgery is another herniation above or below the fusion.
If you extend the fusions to a bigger area, you have an even greater chance of herniating on either side as the bigger the fusion, the more stress on the adjacent vertebrae. So try to deal with the pain and problems as best you can until it has to be done for fear of losing a nerve or cord damage. Try to avoid more surgery as best you can.
I know from where I speak...I've fused from C3 to T1 and have to go every year to see if I've done more damage above or below and this year doesn't look good for my June check-up. At lot of weakness in my left arm. I can deal with the pain but when muscles don't work right, that is a problem for me.
And I have the bad lumbar too but my doc refuses to even touch it. Says that if he starts with the lumbar, he fears he won't stop until he reaches my neck. And just reading here and on the Back board, I believe him.
That's just the way to vertebrae slip.