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family 12-10-2007 04:24 PM

OPLL: ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament
We have recently had a diagonsis in our family, of a 51 year old white male, with OPLL. We were interested in your outcomes as they stand today and your decisions on surgery or not, and did you try some conserivitive forms of therapy? We'd greatly appreciate any information you could provide. Thanks.

PNo 12-10-2007 08:59 PM

Re: OPLL: ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament
Hi and welcome. I am female and do not have OPLL.

First, most people here - although we do not have OPLL we do have similar issues of one or more of (radicular pain, nerve root compression, numbness, tingling, burning, neurological signs, (myleopathy). so we have that in common with you. Your issues are caused by a different process, but it is similar to ours - bony growth, calcification, hypertrophy - narrowing, sometimes lesions and growths, etc.. So lots of what we have experience in, we can help you with.

There was something I read (and posting rules prevent us from sharing URLs), but it had some data that you would be interested in. There is this cool thing called neurosurgery tv and there is a module on OPLL.

The goal of your surgery is the same as most of ours - to open up more space and decompress in there while keeping stability.

My personal experience agrees that the faster you take care of something this serious, the better potential outcome you will have. You do not want to risk your spinal cord and permanent loss of use.

Your goal should be to ensure stability for your spine and with so many levels make sure to do research to get all the data. Post-operative issues like kyphosis or deformity can further exacerbate your problem down the road. Surgeons commonly refer to their favorite research that supports their viewpoint. Not saying your docs are bad, just be an informed patient and do your research. There are variant forms of laminectomies, you might ask why they are not choosing lamnioplasty or a combo of lam and acdf which is also used successfully in OPLL. Another thought is to find an opposite viewpoint from a spine orthopedic surgeon and see what that surgeon says.

I am fused C4-7 so yours would be two more levels, but I do not have any appreciable loss of range of motion. But maybe they can do a combo surgery and only fuse some levels for you? I think the big one for you is C2-3 when it comes to flexion. Below the C2-C3 level , lateral bending and rotation are coupled so I think you get less loss there.

Good luck and will be interested to hear your story along the way.


vertebra 06-01-2008 10:51 PM

Re: OPLL: ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament
Hi. I am caucasian and 48 year-old female. I have mixed history, rather than genetics that caused my OPLL? Ten years ago, I was electrocuted by a small refrigerator. It is said that blood vessel damage follows electrocution by an appliance... In 2006, I had serious nausea (sinusitis); also had osteoporosis in spine only. Ct-scan of sinuses pinched vertebral artery, but did not sever. Two months later, strain turned to painful snap because neck ligament had torn. Then, I developed mild OPLL. Back of skull began grinding with movement. Later in 2006, using too much strength for my condition - I tore the posterior longitudinal ligament away from several cervical spine vertebrae. A pool of fluid developed at mid C-spine level. Blood from torn arteriole? OPLL became extreme within one month. Should I have had traction to prevent this? Or, because of blood vessel damage, did it need to be left alone? Beware! Not all OPLL is arthritis, though often it's misdiagnosed and will confuse your physician.

MrsMolly03 10-18-2008 03:24 PM

Re: OPLL: ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament
Wondering if you have found out anything about OPLL on here. My uncle is going for a second opinion to see if he indeed has OPLL. I am finding it difficult to find information about it ". Thanks for any info you might have.

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