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  • Anterior or posterior? Laminectomy or Discectomy?

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    Old 10-22-2006, 03:09 PM   #16
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    Re: Anterior or posterior? Laminectomy or Discectomy?

    no offense taken, neckpatient...

    I've also got DDD, narrowed spinal canals, and a few other things, I was just trying to simplify my condition w/out pulling out all the Dr's notes with the specifics.

    thanks again NP for pointing out what you did, that every case is different, etc. it also has a lot to do w/your age, activity level, etc etc.

    I had 5 different neurosurgeons all here in Nashville tell me two level ACD w/Fusion was my ONLY option. I spent HOURS on the internet researching ACDF's and learned there were other less invasive options out there. I also asked all my friends and family if they knew ANYONE who had experiences good or bad with ACDF's. I don't think a lot of people do that, I think most people trust their dr's and go with the fusion. And I don't mean to completely bash it. For a lot of people it's the best thing they've ever done. For me, it wasn't the option I chose to take at this time...

    Out of the 3-4 friends of friends who had had it done, NO ONE had anything negative to say about it. The problem though was that everyone had had their ACDF's w/in the last 2 years. In my research it seems that over the course of 4-5 years, a lot of people who had ACDF's need MORE surgeries, have more problems at adjacent levels.

    I just figured, FOR MY OWN SPECIFIC CASE, that I was too young- 39- to go the fusion route yet, especially if I might need more surgeries in the years to come. I thought I'd go the less invasive route and hope that if nothing else it bought me time until possibly artificial discs became the norm. OR, that it might at least correct ONE of the levels to where I would only need fusion at one level sometime in the future, etc.

    Again, I wish I was further along in my recovery so that I could be absolutely convinced that it worked. I without a doubt feel better than I did pre surgery, but I still get sore, especially on days when I overdo, like TODAY. but even at that, it's a different kind of pain, and much more tolerable than my pre surgery pain was...

    I can definitely ramble on and on about the subject, just trying to get as many facts out there and help as best as I can. A lot of people on this board were very helpful to me when I was looking for info, trying to return the favor...


    Last edited by bw67; 10-22-2006 at 03:11 PM.

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    Old 01-25-2007, 04:30 PM   #17
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    Re: Anterior or posterior? Laminectomy or Discectomy?

    BW67--I like what you have to say about non-fusion option...I hope you are still around on this site. I would really like to chat with you about it.

    Old 01-29-2007, 08:11 PM   #18
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    Re: Anterior or posterior? Laminectomy or Discectomy?

    I read the posts but most are not multilevel as you indicated. So to set it straight if you go into surgery thinking as I did, when I come out I'll be better (you will) just recovery is SLOW PROCESS and be dedicated to your new craft recovery.

    Initial Findings :
    Posterior significant protrusion associated with osteophytic forination of the disc C3-C3, C3-C5 and C5-C6 narrowing severely the spinal canal (AP measurement C3-C4:8mm; C4-C5: 6mm; C5-C6: 5mm) and narrowing corresponding neural foraininas more at the level of right C5-C6, compressing and flattening the spinal cord.
    Post-surgical fiision of C6-C7 vertebral bodies.
    There is evidence of mild edeina in the spinal cord at the level of C5-C6.
    No other obvious abnormality detected.
    Impression :
    Large herniated disc with osteophytic complex C3-C4. C4-C5 and C5-C6.

    I am 54 YO male who did not do a lot of physical activity now 9 months post surgery Posterior cervical partial laminectomy. Cervical spondylotic myelopathy Severe spinal canal stenosis C3-C6 Bilateral open door laminoplasty C3-C6 with C5-C6 forminotomy. Now for what has happened since. Could not get out of a chair, nor walk. But motivated. Today 9 months later I Leg Press 100#, Butteryfly 90# per arm, dumb bell 20#. Still numbness in my hands last 3 fingers, my gate is not right yet I can walk but like Herman Munster because there feels like a belt aroung my waist. Some tingling in my feet.

    I also do Acupunture for my hands and that really is helping me (not for everyone). That also helps a great deal. The process is slow very slow. The biggest problem I have is I have taken a fall or 2 and that scared me to the point I did not want to do anything just scared.

    The scar is long not wide but there but I can see it of course. No problems turning my neck. By the way @ 3 levels my spinal cord was 8mm 6mm and 5 mm

    Old 02-05-2007, 04:39 PM   #19
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    Re: Anterior or posterior? Laminectomy or Discectomy?

    BW67---Please describe your surgery if you would... Did they have to cut through all the muscles in the back of your neck or did they use Laser technique? I'm curious.

    Old 12-25-2008, 05:31 PM   #20
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    Re: Anterior or posterior? Laminectomy or Discectomy?

    In 2000 I had posterior laminectomy of c2-26 w/o fusion. I have nothing but problems and pain with my neck since then. I spent 6 months after surgery fighting an infection in my neck befor the doctor finally went back in and excised it and stapled it shut. Finally healed. I doze off in a chair and my neck falls so far backwards I have to grab my hair to pull it back up. They are now going to do a fusion of c2-c6 in hopes it will alleviate a lot of the pain. They will be going through the front this time.

    Originally Posted by bw67 View Post
    I believe anterior is less invasive than posterior, so there's less recovery time. I personally would consider anything NON FUSION before going the fusion route. Once they've removed the discs and fused the vertabrae together, there's no going back.

    Somewhere in the next 5-10 years artificial disc replacement should become pretty standard practice. You'll have eliminated that option if you choose the fusion route....

    There is the ADJACENT LEVEL THEORY, that I believe says once you have fusion done at one level, you increase the chance of needing it at levels above or below it, as the fusion places more stress on the remaining discs.

    I had a two level anterior discectomy WITHOUT fusion at C5-6 and C6-7 eight weeks ago. It was done endoscopically, so I barely have any scar at all. When I say barely, I mean the scar is less than half the width of my pinky finger.

    I have considerably less pain than I had pre surgery, although it is still a little early to tell if the surgery was an absolute complete success. And the pain that I do have now is more like a muscle soreness then it is the unbearable arm/neck pain I had pre surgery...

    I wish I was further along in my recovery so that I could say hands down, absolutely without a doubt I AM COMPLETELY HEALED!!!! Still holding my breath...

    In my opinion, for what it's worth, I would again consider any and all options that did NOT involve fusion first...

    best of luck


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