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  • Cervical Laminectomy

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    Old 04-06-2007, 11:10 AM   #1
    edskym
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    Cervical Laminectomy

    Most people on this site talk about fusions but my doctor has suggested a cervical laminectomy. I did have a c6-7 fusion in 2002 and a foraminotomy in 2005. The operations gave me little relief from arm pain and daily headaches.
    My neck has many problems and the alternative would be a 3 level fusion which I am not going to do.

    My question to the many great peole on this board is has anybody had, or heard of success with CERVICAL LAMINECTOMY and what is the down side.
    I read all the medical site for their info but would like someone who has gone through the operation input. Any info would be greatly appericated.

    Ed

     
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    Old 01-27-2008, 07:14 AM   #2
    Houstondiva
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    Ed,

    I have a c6-c7 laminectomy in 2000 and walked 2 miles the next day and never wore the collar and water skiied the summer after. This last Fall of 07 I got hit in the back of my car on the way to work and took a weight lifting class and all of a sudden felt some of the tingling going on like the symptons of 8 years ago. I tried PT first this time and at first it seemed like I had beat it but by the second month, I could not put on a sweatshirt without horrible shooting pain. I got a Ct scan and this time the hernaited disk was one ver up c5-c6. I had my 2nd laminectomy 2 weeks ago and the results were not the same, I have very little arm strenth and alot of muscle spasm stuff going on. I will be doing pt for a while I can see and hope to regain everything I had before. If I had the choice I would get the Lam's again vs a fusion but I wonder had I gotten the fusion the first time would I have the repeat problems in the similar area...Will I eventually be getting a fusion in this area?

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 09:15 AM   #3
    feelbad
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    i have heard this procedure mentioned many times here but really don't know for certain just what actually is involved with an actual foraminotomy.what do they actually do or remove during that type of procedure?any help there would be great.there could possibly be some drawbacks for you depending on the overall stability of your c spine.the thing about lamis is it also takes away a support/interlocking bone that just helps to really keep the neck area stable.it would weaken the over all integrety of your c spine to a certain degree.i had to have a tri level lami done back in 03 so they could actually get to my spinal cord to remove a glob of blood vessels that was a congenital malformation i just had show up on my MRI i had done to try and determine what disc i had herniated.i can tell you that my c spine now just always 'feels' kind of fragile?

    another thing you need to be absolutely certain of before doing this is whether or not with 100% certainty that your fusion actually took.beleive me,scans do not always show what is actually going on with a fusion as far as it actually taking or not taking.my MRI was inconclusive for fusion and had recommended having a CT,well the CT stated i most definitely was fused when my symptoms stated otherwise.it was not til they actually did a simple flexion and extension x ray that what i had known became finally apparent to my NS,i was not fused at all.it just needs to be totally solid before you would really go in and have them remove a bone that will take away some level of integrity of your spinal column in the neck.

    a lami tho could possibly help your situation too.you have to look at the bigger picture and just wiegh the good aganst the bad here.just what are the problems you have going on within your c spine at this point?and what did you have PRE op going onthat they tried to fix with the fusion and the form procedures?if you could post the summary part of your MRI it would really be helpful in giving you the best possible advice for your particular situation.depending upon other issues you may have going on,it would all need to be considered before going ahead with this.its just a matter of looking at ALL of your c spine issues and how removing the back of your support bone would possibly effect them,you know what i mean?knowing everything you have already Dxed and going on in there would just be very helpful.marcia
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    3-22-01,herniated C-6-7
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    9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 09:29 AM   #4
    Backinthesaddle
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    Yes Feelbad it does take away from the stability of the spine. I am now in that position now. The lami I had in 2003 C6/7 has collapsed on the nerve. I have pain and numbness now in the right arm, shoulder area as well as hand and finger pain. I don't expect it to go away however I will be having a fusion sometime in the next month or so. Wish my neuro woulda done that in the first place.

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 11:30 AM   #5
    BobM
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    Hello Ed
    Sorry to hear about your continuing problems. I've been on this forum for 3 years now, and have observed two types of situations people have. First, there are people who have a problem, are here for awhile and then maybe have surgery, and then they are 'gone' because their problems are resolved. The second type, are the folks who have continuing problems, and they tend to participate in discussions over the long haul. I regret that I get to be a member of this second group.

    As for your concern over a 3 level fusion - I think it depends somewhat on which levels are involved. Each additional level that gets fused causes a little greater loss of range of motion. I have been fused from C4/5/6/7 in two ACDF surgeries, and so I've had to adjust in how I look around to see things. I've lost probably 40% of what I used to have; it would be a lot more if C2/3 were fused, and a great deal more if C1/2 were fused (but I haven't seen a lot of people here with trouble at those levels).

    Just curious - why do you feel that the fusion approach is less desired, as a way to treat problems at multiple levels?

    In any case, I wish you the best of outcomes!
    Bob

     
    Old 01-27-2008, 01:26 PM   #6
    roy15
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    I'm going through the similar decision making of fusion vs non fusion, with cervical laminectomy. One ortho says he'll only perform this surgery with c3-7 fusion, while another will do it without fusion. I'm leaning towards the less invasive. I have no pain except for some intermitent numbness in my right arm. I'd rather take the chance with non fusion and if things change due to instability or pain, I'll go back for the fusion. I have a friend who had a cervical laminectomy without fusion in 1992, he has had no problems with it since. If I need to manage my decision with an MRI yearly, I will. I need to decompress the chord due to complex osteophytes in the area of C4-5. I have two appointments with a NS and another ortho this week to discuss my surgery. I just feel having rods and screws in my spine, can present problems as well. I'll see if my two docs are adament about the fusion, that might change my decision once again.

     
    Old 01-29-2008, 07:13 PM   #7
    feelbad
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    just a bit curious roy about trying to remove osteophytes from a posterior approach when the majority of them are actually anterior?it would be very difficult considering just where the cord is,in trying to decompress actual cord compression from the back,unless your bone spurs just happen to possibly lateral or something?just wondering anatomy wise thats all.i just think it would be much more risky for you cord wise,with less possible success if done with only a lami(unless they feel there is enough room there?).just what does it state about this particular area on youer MRI in that summary at the end as far as the cord being affected and any other pertinent issues going on?i would just think they would almost have to actually move the cord to even realistically access that area at all,you know what i mean?marcia
    __________________
    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 01-30-2008, 01:52 PM   #8
    roy15
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by feelbad View Post
    just a bit curious roy about trying to remove osteophytes from a posterior approach when the majority of them are actually anterior?it would be very difficult considering just where the cord is,in trying to decompress actual cord compression from the back,unless your bone spurs just happen to possibly lateral or something?just wondering anatomy wise thats all.i just think it would be much more risky for you cord wise,with less possible success if done with only a lami(unless they feel there is enough room there?).just what does it state about this particular area on youer MRI in that summary at the end as far as the cord being affected and any other pertinent issues going on?i would just think they would almost have to actually move the cord to even realistically access that area at all,you know what i mean?marcia
    Hi Marcia
    I have cervical stenosis moderate to severe uncovertebral hypertrophy with cord impingement versus mild compression in C4-5.Mod to severe bilateral neural foraminal narrowing. Mild to mod left paracentral spondylotic disc protrusion which contacts the cord in C5-6.Mod to sev right & left neural foraminal narrowing. I was told doing a post lami will decompress the cord by giving it more room, but it does not remove the osteophytes. In my case doing an ACDF, is difficult because I have adjacent stenotic levels. Roy

    Last edited by roy15; 01-30-2008 at 01:52 PM.

     
    Old 01-31-2008, 05:06 AM   #9
    roy15
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    Re: Cervical Laminectomy

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by edskym View Post
    Most people on this site talk about fusions but my doctor has suggested a cervical laminectomy. I did have a c6-7 fusion in 2002 and a foraminotomy in 2005. The operations gave me little relief from arm pain and daily headaches.
    My neck has many problems and the alternative would be a 3 level fusion which I am not going to do.

    My question to the many great peole on this board is has anybody had, or heard of success with CERVICAL LAMINECTOMY and what is the down side.
    I read all the medical site for their info but would like someone who has gone through the operation input. Any info would be greatly appericated.

    Ed
    Cervocal post Lami's are successful and what I'm finding is most NS &Orthos would rather fuse with this procedure. All are mostly concerned with post lami kyphosis(downside). You might find a doc that will do it without fusion, but you must show your a candidate for it. It almost sounded like they were burned in the past. To be a candidate: no kyphosis, no evidence of cervical instability, normal lordosis, and no significant stenosis in adjacent levels. This is the info I received from getting second opinions, in my case. Still trying to figure it out.

    Last edited by roy15; 01-31-2008 at 05:07 AM.

     
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