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  • 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

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    Old 05-10-2006, 08:55 PM   #1
    jenjen393
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    Exclamation 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    Hi,
    My name is Jennifer...first some quick background notes

    intermittent right side pain from 10/05 to 3/05

    24hr/day tingling and numbness on right side

    family doctor says it's arthritis--take 3 iboprofen--HAH

    went to an orthopaedic, MRI showed 2 herniated discs causing narrowing of the spinal canal--4 weeks PT--sypmtoms worsened--referred me to neurosurgeon...1st available appt. 6/21/06 (it was now mid April)

    all over body (including neck,face & head) numbness..moved my appointment up to 5/1/06

    while in the surgeon's office he had PA make appt for another MRI that night and told me about the surgery..said that my all-over numbness/tingling was because the spinal cord was being compressed and while the pain wasn't that great, the chances of paralysis (if I were to fall or be in an accident) would be great.

    new MRI didn't show that much of a change..scheduled me for a brain MRI next day and if that was clear, wanted to operate on Friday

    Woke up from 3 hr surgery--all symptoms gone-had full range of motion with my right arm! normal problems swallowing, some head and neck pain..Have only worked about 6 hours this week (I own my own business) most of it at home

    I've had on/off brief moments of tingling/numbness on my right side since Sunday (2 days after surgery). This afternoon (Wednesday) my right arm has been continually numb...then for 2 hours this evening, I had the deep muscle spasms in the right arm and then there was a period of about 2 minutes where I had so much pain in the left back of my head, I started crying...it disappeared, then the spasms were gone and now my entire right side is numb..including neck, chest, feet, face....i'm now getting weird head pain..

    HELP!!...does anyone have any thoughts/suggestions???

    Thank you so much just for reading...Have a good evening!

    Jennifer

     
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    Old 05-10-2006, 09:09 PM   #2
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    Jennifer,
    Sounds like you were on track and you "might" be overdoing it? You just had a major surgery, you need to give your body time to heal. I know there is swelling in the surgery site, neck etc. fluids, imflammation etc. I just had surgery myself and although i have worked an hour or here and there this week, i feel it after.

    I bet we all feel same after surgery because we are loaded up with so much meds from surgery.

    First and foremost always talk to you dr. but you might consider figuring out how to take it a little more easy for at least a week to let yourself heal!

    Hang in there

     
    Old 05-10-2006, 11:58 PM   #3
    JackieH
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    Jen, Azn.s right.
    But you should call your doctor 1st thing in the morning to notify them of the all over numbness just to be safe.
    The spasms are normal but the large area of numbness is new to me.
    Just call to be sure, K?

    You'll get better.
    JackieH

     
    Old 05-11-2006, 03:53 AM   #4
    jenjen393
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    Thanks so much for responding!!
    This morning I awake to no numbness or tingling!
    No arm pain
    Weakness in neck, and some neck pain
    I am going to call the doctor (he is in State College PA--Penn State)
    on the Friday before my surgery, I went to my local emergency room (at the telephone advice of my ortho) and they told me that I needed to go see my family doctor and that they would do blood work to get the ball rolling...and maybe he would have some "tests under his sleeve" that would help!....the local ER is DEFENITELY OUT--I was SOOOO MAD!....

    Anyway, thanks so much---hope you have a wonderful day!!
    Jennifer

     
    Old 05-11-2006, 07:01 AM   #5
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    Like everyone else here has told you,you just had a major surgery and should really be doing almost nothing right now and just concentrate on healing,the more you are moving around,the more likely your fusionwont actually take,or will take much longer to actually attach itself to the bone plug.

    Just exactly where or what areas of your spine were fused and just where is that spinal cord compression and was that relived with the surgery?i am kind of assuming here that because your head and face was involved,it is somewhere near the c 7 t 1 areas?You do have a c 8 nerve despite the fact that you do not actually have a c 8 vertebrae?but their are a couple of the cranial nerves that do go down from the head and then junction at that c 8 nerve level and go back up into the head again.thismay possibly explain the head and face involvement.I have this too and my spinal cord injury is right under that c 8 nerve levl and my fusion was at the c 6 7.

    are you having any sort of actual symptoms below the upper torso area?you really need to find out whther or not the actual cord is still somewhat compressed yet.This alone could still be causing you ongoing symptoms,even if it is no longer being compressed.it takes a very long time for the cord to kind of "right" itself after being compressed and then there is also the possibility,depending on just how severely and how long it was being compressed,that some damage may be present and sort of a permanent type of thing.

    I am dealing with some rather extensive spinal cord damage due to a surgery that had to be done on the inside of the actualcord.this surgery damaged three spinal tracts three spinal nerves an also my sympathetic nervous system.I am having one heck of a time in trying to manage the tons of secondary spinal cord injuries and the syndromes that came along with it.Mine will never get better.

    In order to assure the best possible outcome now you really DO need to just get used to the idea that you are healing and cannot just go about your normal daily business for a few weeks.despite how good you may feel some days,do not give into it and think that you can actually do certain things or trust me,it will come back to bite you in the butt like it did me.

    my fusion never took so I had to undergo a second surgery to place a plate and screws in there.it finally took after about a year and a half.I know for sure that this finally took as when my new NS went into the vertebraes in the back of my neck to do the cavernoma reection,he said he actually visualized the fusion while he was back there.I guess you can't get any better than actually seeing it with your own eyes vs looking at afilm of it.

    If I were you,I would take it as easy aspossible right now and for the next few weeks.I would also keep track of all of your ongoing symptoms during the next six weeks or so and definitely report anything "new' to your NS.You just have to be very very careful to not keep "disturbing' that fusing area.did you have any hardware placed or are you also wearing a good solid collar?the collar,tho sometimes a huge pain in the butt,really does help to keep the bone ends much better aligned and really does speed the healing and fusing process.it also helps alot from keeping you from moving your neck into a bad position.or any sudden movement will not affect your neck quite as badly.

    Just take it easy for now til things get better healed.I hope all goes well for ya.keep track of your changing symptoms tho,this really IS rather important.I used one of those weekly planner type things?it worked really well.I just kept bringing it to all of my appts with my NS so he could evaluate all of my ongoing symptoms.

    please keep us posted on how things are going.good luck,Marcia
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    3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
    11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
    9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

     
    Old 05-11-2006, 07:31 AM   #6
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    Holy Hanna!

    What are you doing working 6 hours a few days after this surgery!

    You better go lay down, and stop this nonsense.

    Take it Slow!

     
    Old 05-11-2006, 08:35 AM   #7
    acdfouch
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    I'm on the same page as Dennis.

    You don't mention what you do...

    Even tho you are "working from home", I have to suspect that work = strenuous things ... Either sitting at the computer... Lifting things heavier than 5 pounds...

    I would REALLY try to just take it easy if at all possible.

    If not - look at it this way.

    Do you REALLY want to have gone through all this to do "things" that need to be done over the upcoming weeks that could be handled with the help of someone else or just plain old let go?

    Why risk your longterm goal by overdoing it today?

     
    Old 05-11-2006, 09:30 AM   #8
    sunshine221
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    Re: 5 days post-op ACDF w/fusion-symptoms have returned--I'm scared!!

    it's that important that I'll "pipe in" too -- SLOW DOWN -- I'm self employed with a total of 8 employees counting my husband and myself - three don't work out of the office and two others are often on the road - while that makes it hard to be out of the office and I can work from home too -- health has to come first. I was totally home the first 13 days after surgery, with minimal computer time (pretty much just preparing bank deposits) then I went in to pay bills and do payroll for half a day and then I did very part time the following week. For weeks 4 and 5, and possibly six I was in the office but took at least one to two breaks where I lied down and rested/napped.

    At one point I was doing too much upper body exercise (about 4 weeks) and started getting horrible pain so I cut back.

    Good luck.

    Gloria

     
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