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  • Had surgery on C4-C5 Is this pain nornal?

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    Old 08-08-2003, 01:33 PM   #1
    bren7
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    Question Had surgery on C4-C5 Is this pain nornal?

    Hello,
    I'm new the this site. I'm not sure how message boards work never been on one before.
    I woke up in the end of April my neck was hurting, I thought I slept on it wrong or pulled a muscle or something. I dealt with the pain until the end of May when the pain in my neck and shoulder started to become more painful and I had pain shooting down my arm and if I moved my arm, my arm and hand would turn purple. I finally decided to see the doctoe, he sent me for a MRI put me on pain killers and steriods and muscle relaxers. I had the MRI done the same day as seeing him. The doctor called my the next day and told me to see and neurosurgeon. I called and made and appointment for the neurosurgeon, He got me in the next day. He said I had a herniated disk in C4 and C5 was bulging, he said I need surgery to remove the disks and that they would put bone and plate and screws in, they were going to go though my throat. (My mother had this surgery done 6 or 8 years ago she had the same problem). So I said ok to have the surgery, I had to do something the pain was horrible, my blood pressure went up (because of the pain) 178/105, when I took the pain killers it went down to almost normal. Anyway, I agreed to the surgery and he made the appointment for surgery 3 days later. I made a point to tell him that I'm allergic to surgical steel, I can wear necklaces and bracelets but it can not be in mefor a long period of time, I can have blood drawn and IV's for short periods of time but thats it. The doctor said not to worry they use titanium for the plates and screws. I asked what are the chance of my being allergic to titanium, He said slim chance but it could happen. I think he rushed me into having the surgery, I had the surgery on May 27, 2003. Since the surgery I have been getting better, I get headaches and some pain in my neck and back of the head, I get light headed and dizzy spells and my legs get weak, these were all starting to subsiding some. I saw the doctor in July and had an xray takin everything was looking fine. The end of last week, I started getting the pain in my back of the head and the upper part of my neck more, the headaches are horrible now, I have been running a low grade fever since the early part of this week at least that when I noticed it, I also have gottin a numbing feeling in the upper part of my neck and lower back part of my head, they don't go away unless I take a pain killer, the pain killers aren't completely take the pain away but at least I can deal with it. Something isn't right, so I saw the doctor on Wednesday this week, He say he doesn't understand why I'm getting worse now, so he sent me to have xrays takin again, I had the xrays takin on Wednesday to. He said he would call me and let me know what the results are in the evening. Well needless to say I haven't hear from him. Today I called the office and he's not in so I have to see him on Monday.
    My question is, is this normal to be getting better then just go down like this? I scared that if I have and infection caused by the titanium I'm in trouble. The xrays I had taken on Wednesday won't show if there is an infection unless it is extremely severe and in the bone.
    I a pretty strong person, I can deal with a lot of pain, but this is horrible. I didn't expect that all the pain would just disappear right after surgery, I knew it would take time, that I would have good days and bad days, but this isn't just a ad day this one is continueing. I try to be very careful with everything I do, I try not to do to much. The doctor said I could go back to work 6-8 weeks after surgery, now he is say another month or 2 before I can go back.

    Is all this normal?

    Thank you for let me rambling on, I don't mean to complain.
    Bren


    [This message has been edited by bren7 (edited 08-08-2003).]

     
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    Old 08-08-2003, 01:45 PM   #2
    AngelicMoon
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    Welcome Bren!
    I am recoverving from ACDF w/out hardware done on June 30th. All the pains you are experiencing I have. I was pain free for one week after surgery then all my symptoms returned and were worse. I have the pain in my neck and headaches too. This is nerve pain. I was on Neurontin prior to surgery but went off it because of the side effects even though it did help. My NS wants to do some injections for me when I get out of my collar(2 more weeks). He is hoping that will help this pain. I am taking a muscle relaxer 3 times a day which has helped the spasms. I take Percocet once or twice a day as it does not help the nerve pain. There are many of us here who have this /had this trouble. The low grade fever you have could be an infection, but I had a low fever last week and no infection was found. I'll try to find my thread about my nightmare with my NS and bump it up for you to read. You will love this board, it is so helpful to hear others that have similar experiences. Ask alot of questions. Though we are not doctors we can give our input.



    ------------------
    ~Kat~

    March,2003~started with muscle spasms, shoulder pain, arm pain
    Perscribed muscle relaxers
    a week later prescribed steroids, sent to PT, and for MRI which showed 3 bulging discs C3-4, C4-5, C5-6
    May2003~2nd course of steroids, numbing, tingling in arm and fingers,nerve pain and headaches, stopped PT(due to worsening of symptoms), had EMG which showed nothing irregular
    May2003~appt w/neurosurgeon, sent for myleogram which showed herniation at C5-6 with nerve compression,DDD,arthritis in spine
    June30,2003~ACDF with fusion using donor bone, no hardware
    presently losing my mind from doing absolutely nothing~

     
    Old 08-08-2003, 01:47 PM   #3
    more
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    Welcome to the boards - sorry you have to be here (in other words - wish you did not have this problem). It does not seem normal to me to be getting the pain you are now in but it may be from using the muscles again.

    One thing I would do is if after seeing the doctor on Monday he says the xrays look OK and you should not be having this problem - ask him about having another MRI to see if you may have done damage to another disc or if the fusion is not taking. The discs will not show up on xrays.

    Good Luck

     
    Old 08-08-2003, 01:50 PM   #4
    AngelicMoon
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    Bren~
    Read my threads "calling ns in the morning" and "I can't believe this!"

     
    Old 08-08-2003, 01:51 PM   #5
    empi
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    Dear Bren:

    You have every right to complain. It doesn't sound right to me. I had an anterior discectomy (front of the neck) in November at C-4-C5 with no plate and I never had any pain whatsoever.

    What does your doctor plan to do about this?

    empi

     
    Old 08-08-2003, 03:02 PM   #6
    bren7
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    Thank you everyone for your input.

    I understand that it was going to take a while to recover. I know if I do to much I will regret it, with pain in the neck and back of head and headaches. The headaches feel like my head is in a vise! I've done that. But I didn't do anything this time to start the pain. I only wear my collar in the car and/or if I'm out and about in pain. The Dr. said I could stop wearing the collar a few weeks ago, unless I'm in the car, or doing a lot of walking.
    He said that I should be fused in 3 months. But I have read that if could take 6 months or more to fuse.
    Does anyone know what symtoms I should watch for in case of infection? The Dr. won't tell me, because as he said there is a slim chance of infection. I can't fine information on the internet about it either.
    Since I have had the surgery I have heard about alot of people who have had this done. I didn't realize that was so common. It's nice to be able to speak with people who have had this done and remeber what it is like having it done. As I said my mom had this done years ago but she really doesn't remember how long it took to recover or much of the pain or symtoms.

    Thank you for being here. I don't feel so alone.
    Bren

    [This message has been edited by bren7 (edited 08-08-2003).]

     
    Old 08-11-2003, 04:02 PM   #7
    NYFUSED
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    Hi and welcome
    If you are worried about any type of bone infection, I would read into the symptoms. You would be extremely ill all over your body.And have no energy at all. It is a very serious disease. Osteomyitis, it is called. I also thought I had it when I couldnt find out why I was feeling so bad. I also had low grade fevers for 2 weeks. ( ended up with a staph infection, ugh...)
    You really should have an MRI or Cat Scan first. X-ray's do no show herniations or sometimes bone spurs. Also, anyone that has titanium or any type of metal in their body should know that it can cause a false/positiver result. It produces shadows. My PCP, NS and technician told me this. I was given a myelogram after MRI AND CAT SCAN and that showed everything. good luck and I will say a prayer for you.

    Lori

    LAMINECTOMY L4-5 2/2001
    ACDF C5-6-7 10/2002 OWN BONE
    POST. CERVICAL LAMINECTOMY-FORAMINOTOY C6-7 6/4/2003
    STAPH INFECTION BACK IN HOSP. 7/4- 7/9/2003
    __________________
    lami L4-5, ACDF C5-6-7, post. lami-foraminotomy c6-7, staph infect. revision acdf c4-5-6-7 new c4-5 2004. STILL IN PAIN 24/7

     
    Old 08-11-2003, 05:51 PM   #8
    cotal
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    ...

    [This message has been edited by cotal (edited 08-11-2003).]
    __________________
    • 1993 C5-C6 compression noted in Xray
    • 1995 Forearm soreness observed, attribute to RSI
    • 1997 Jammed finger in Sports Accident, numbness never goes away
    • 1998 numbness and parathesia in middle finger attribute to carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Carpal tunnel surgery ineffective
    • 2000 Acupuncture, Acupressure, massage, PT, Yoga
    • 2001 Neurologist orders MRI, diagnosis of cervical radiculopathy and spondylosis
    • 2002 Conservative therapies continued, condition persists, 5 neurosurgeons consulted
    • 2003 Artificial disc prosthesis considered and rejected, 2 level fusion scheduled
    • July 28, 2003 2 level ACDF with fusion performed C5-C6,C6-C7

     
    Old 08-11-2003, 05:53 PM   #9
    cotal
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    Hi All,
    I've been away from the board for a while because I had the ACDF surgery. July 28, 2003 had 2 level discectomy w/donor bone fusion. No pain meds taken until day 3 after surgery. Incision and neck never felt bad. All the side effects I feel are in my back and arms. The Parasthesea I had is still there, but stronger.

    Was in a hard ASPEN collar but removed it yesterday (after 2 weeks). Cannot lift anything or stress at all without bring on back pain and shoulder/arm stress /pain /spasms. Hopefully this will disappear over time. Taking Alleve to "alleviate" the discomfort. Am walking a lot. Back massages seem to help, took my first bath which was really weird on the neck, but made my back feel better.

    Have not gone back to work or done anything active as of yet. Hope to get back in a few weeks, but understand these things cannot be rushed.

    Guy

    ------------------
    • 1993 C5-C6 compression noted in Xray
    • 1995 Forearm soreness observed, attribute to RSI
    • 1997 Jammed finger in Sports Accident, numbness never goes away
    • 1998 numbness and parathesia in middle finger attribute to carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Carpal tunnel surgery ineffective
    • 2000 Acupuncture, Acupressure, massage, PT, Yoga
    • 2001 Neurologist orders MRI, diagnosis of cervical radiculopathy and spondylosis
    • 2002 Conservative therapies continued, condition persists, 5 neurosurgeons consulted
    • 2003 Artificial disc prosthesis considered and rejected, 2 level fusion scheduled
    • July 28, 2003 2 level ACDF with fusion performed C5-C6,C6-C7

    [This message has been edited by cotal (edited 08-11-2003).]
    __________________
    • 1993 C5-C6 compression noted in Xray
    • 1995 Forearm soreness observed, attribute to RSI
    • 1997 Jammed finger in Sports Accident, numbness never goes away
    • 1998 numbness and parathesia in middle finger attribute to carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Carpal tunnel surgery ineffective
    • 2000 Acupuncture, Acupressure, massage, PT, Yoga
    • 2001 Neurologist orders MRI, diagnosis of cervical radiculopathy and spondylosis
    • 2002 Conservative therapies continued, condition persists, 5 neurosurgeons consulted
    • 2003 Artificial disc prosthesis considered and rejected, 2 level fusion scheduled
    • July 28, 2003 2 level ACDF with fusion performed C5-C6,C6-C7

     
    Old 08-12-2003, 07:58 AM   #10
    mel333
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    Hi Bren,
    I am 3 weeks post op from ADR C5/6. I am having loads of spasms and headaches. I am hoping it's just early days and time will settle things. It must be very frustrating what your going through now, still.
    I would look further into possible reactions even if it's unlikely. You will feel better to check on everything completely.
    Guy,
    Glad your surgery went well. Take it easy recovering. I am finding it rather tough.
    Mel
    __________________
    23rd July 03, ADR c5/6
    Also disc bulges c3/4 and 6/7. Numerous facet and nerve blocks along with extensive conservative treatment prior to surgery.

     
    Old 08-12-2003, 11:44 AM   #11
    cotal
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    Join Date: Mar 2003
    Location: West Hartford, CT 2 level ACDF w/Fusion
    Posts: 30
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    Bren,
    It would seem very unusual if you had a reaction to the titanium. Moreso the trauma is due to the surgery.

    Mel,
    I thought I was doing well until I strained myself reaching for the salt shaker!

    Guy


    ------------------
    • 1993 C5-C6 compression noted in Xray
    • 1995 Forearm soreness observed, attribute to RSI
    • 1997 Jammed finger in Sports Accident, numbness never goes away
    • 1998 numbness and parathesia in middle finger attribute to carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Carpal tunnel surgery ineffective
    • 2000 Acupuncture, Acupressure, massage, PT, Yoga
    • 2001 Neurologist orders MRI, diagnosis of cervical radiculopathy and spondylosis
    • 2002 Conservative therapies continued, condition persists, 5 neurosurgeons consulted
    • 2003 Artificial disc prosthesis considered and rejected, 2 level fusion scheduled
    • July 28, 2003 2 level ACDF with fusion performed C5-C6,C6-C7
    __________________
    • 1993 C5-C6 compression noted in Xray
    • 1995 Forearm soreness observed, attribute to RSI
    • 1997 Jammed finger in Sports Accident, numbness never goes away
    • 1998 numbness and parathesia in middle finger attribute to carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Carpal tunnel surgery ineffective
    • 2000 Acupuncture, Acupressure, massage, PT, Yoga
    • 2001 Neurologist orders MRI, diagnosis of cervical radiculopathy and spondylosis
    • 2002 Conservative therapies continued, condition persists, 5 neurosurgeons consulted
    • 2003 Artificial disc prosthesis considered and rejected, 2 level fusion scheduled
    • July 28, 2003 2 level ACDF with fusion performed C5-C6,C6-C7

     
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