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Return of muscle mass and strength

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Old 03-10-2003, 09:08 AM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Fort Worth
Posts: 1
Pet HB User
Post Return of muscle mass and strength

I had ACDF with plating and donor bone C6-7 (11/19/01) after MRI revealed bulging disk. Symptoms were severe pain in left tricep, mild pain in neck, numb index finger and strength loss. Dr. was confident that I would have 100% recovery. Unfortunately, the feeling in my index finger has not returned and I'm having difficulty returning strength and mass to my left arm. It's obvious that I have some degree of permanent nerve damage. Is it still possible to build muscle mass with this type of injury? What is the long-term effect of this type of injury? Although I'm satisfied with my Dr's surgical skills, he has been unwilling to give me a straight answer to the above questions… Any help/advice is appreciated…

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Old 03-10-2003, 11:47 AM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Michigan
Posts: 319
Nanner HB UserNanner HB User

Hi Pet, welcome to the spinal cord board!

The numbness is often the last vestige of your injury to disappear. Nerves regenerate very slowly. Some folks will tell you their pain was gone immediately after surgery, but some take a bit longer. I know that for about a month after surgery I would at times feel some arm pain, but then it was gone.

The numbness in my fingers reduced, but never totally disappeared. I can live with that, but the pain is another issue entirely.

I still have weakness in my right arm, but now it seems that after surgery I developed a couple of issues with narrowing of the foramen at a couple levels. Pain is back, but I am a (luckily) rare case. If the fusion works, and nothing else rears its ugly head, you should be pain free soon and hopefully the numbness will subside with time.

One thing to remember is that we all have different experiences, but on the whole I don't think any poster thinks they are worse off for the surgery. We don't all recover 100% of mobility, strength, or feeling in our digits, but we're better than we were without the operation.

Nancy D-ACDF C6-7 on 6/7/02. Donor bone with no hardware
Nancy D-ACDF 6/2/02, bladder suspension 12/06, sarcoidosis 10/07, TKR 9/3/13

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