I am a 43 year old female in great health. Nope, good health. Nope, slowly going down hill. I was a dental hygienist in a very fast paced dental office. I typically saw 12-15 patient per day and many were considered periodontally involved (takes longer and more pressure needed to get crap off their teeth basically). I have had "issues" as long as I can remember. I once went to a chiro when I was 4 years out of school and she said, "find a new career because you are gonna have big problems down the road". At that time I thought she was wacky and just out for my money.Not to mention, I was in student loan debt up to my eyeballs. She told me that, "my long straight neck" would be a potential problem along with my repetive motion on the job and family history.
A 2010 MRI revield C4 down to T1 moderate bulging discs and osteophyte involvement.
I did steroid injections with no relief and phys therapy and deep tissue massage....nothing. But I had to continue to work.
Went to a new neurosurgeon in 2011 and she ordered MRI. She called me at home and told me I need IMMEDIATE surgery due to severe spinal cord displacement. She said it was amazing I did not have paralasys and could still function. She said if I were to tork my neck just right, I could end up paralized. Needless to say, I had ACDF the next week C5-6 & C6-7 with cadaver bone, a plate and 3 screws. She did not recommed a neck brace or phys therapy and 3-4mos of healing. After no relief, she then recommended phys therapy. I still get deep tissue massage regularly. I found a great neurmuscular therapist....highly recommend one. Saw my neuro last week ready to cry. I can no longer work as a hygienist (she also recommeded I give it up but physically couldnt do it if I had to) My pain is not any better. I now have tingling and numbness in arms/hands (did not have much of that before) Anyway, now she said I have developed another bone spur as a result of previous fusion.....in less than a year at C7-T1. Also, one of my grafts has not fully taken.....uuugghh. She is recommending steroid injection...AGAIN. Just typing this message is killing me. It has started to really affect my life. My low back has issues as well but the upper pain tends to mask it. Any advice?? What happends if the fusion does not take? She said give it a full 18 mos. Also, the formation of the spur so soon is concerning. SHe thinks that is why I am still in pain. Is it that or the lack of fusion??She doesnt have an answer and I am very fustrated. Any advice.......
I'm really sorry you're having so much trouble. Frankly, I have always wondered how dentists and hygienists can so what they do, leaning forward with arms held out all day long. I guess some can and some can't. It would probably be helpful if anyone wanting to go into that field gets some kind of physical analysis before going to school.
The best advice I can give you is to get opinions from TWO other docs. You need all the information you can get, and I have to say that your situation is beyond my poor powers of analysis.
I am not saying that your surgeon did anything wrong, or that she's wrong about what to do now, but you still need to talk to other docs.
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