It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Spinal Cord Disorders Message Board

  • Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

  • Post New Thread   Closed Thread
    Thread Tools Search this Thread
    Old 03-05-2015, 01:34 AM   #1
    mario5
    Newbie
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Mar 2015
    Posts: 4
    mario5 HB User
    Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

    Hi,

    I'm going to start from the beginning so please lend me your patience.

    In January 2014 I started feeling weakness on my right leg. Didn't give it much thought as it wasn't very serious. I thought it was because I wasn't going to the gym. The weakness persisted. In September I started noticing the weakness had gotten worse. Sometimes I'd trip because I was dragging my right leg. When I got nervous, angry, stressed, frustrated (basically anything that altered my calmness) my right leg would start shaking. Eventually even the cold would make my leg shake. My right arm had this sore pain on top of my forearm and on the back of my right hand. It wasn't unbearable but it was there 24/7. It would only hurt if you touch it, or even just blow wind at it. Due to my job, I didn't have time to go to the doctor until December.

    The doctor checked me up and said I had hyper reflex on all four limbs. I thought the shaking was only on my right leg but certain positions revealed that all four limbs would shake as well. However, the right side of my body shook more. Did an MRI and found herniated disc C4-C5 and a small bulge in C5-C6. The hernia was protruding the the right side (in theory it should affect only my upper body - arms and shoulder specifically) but that didn't explain my leg weakness and trembling. Also, why would my lower lip tremble sometimes when I'm tense was another mistery.

    Finally, after consulting with several doctors, I had both discs replaced with MOBI-C. That little piece of metal is quite expensive I must say. Immediately after surgery, I felt the pain in the back of my hand disappear, and the top of my forearm almost completely gone. The shaking/trembling was still there. Weakness wasn't so noticeable anymore. Doctor said symptoms will probably heal. If it doesn't after a year, that's it. You're stuck with the shaking problem.

    Post surgery one month: Doctor said everything looked good. Wound healed perfectly.

    Questions:

    1. One month after surgery, pain in my right arm starts to come back. Is it because the surgery was flawed? How can it go away and come back?

    2. Why is a herniated disc in C4-C5 and C5-C6 affect my legs? And my lips?

    3. I've read that the symptoms vary when the affected region is Spinal Cord VS Spinal Nerve. MRI showed no compression on spinal cord, just spinal nerve so why is it affecting my leg?

    4. What are my chances of getting my normal life back? I mean, it's been compressed for over a year. Is that damage too severe? Or do I have a chance?

    I've seen various neurologists, neurosurgeon, nerve pain doctors, and they haven't given me consistent answers. I'm desperate. Will this get worse? Should I be doing some kind of analysis? See a different doctor? Please help. Thank you in advance!

     
    Sponsors Lightbulb
       
    Old 03-05-2015, 04:23 PM   #2
    ChuckStr
    Veteran
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Apr 2014
    Location: seattle wa USA
    Posts: 406
    ChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB User
    Re: Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

    Welcome to the board!

    1. Possibly. Did you pay for the MOBI-C replacements yourself? The last I checked 1 year ago, only single levels were approved by FDA outside of trials. That seems a bit suspicious. Other things you say make me wonder if you have instability in your spine (spondylolisthesis). That would contraindicate the use of artificial discs and could explain why you have a return of symptoms. Have you had follow up imaging to see what these disks are doing? If not, I would ask about that when you see your surgeon.

    2/3. The only reason I could think it would affect your legs is myelopathy caused by spinal cord compression. Who told you the MRI didn't show spinal cord compression? If that's so, then someone should have been looking for a different cause for the issues with your legs. Cervical nerve root problems will not cause issues in your legs. They can cause issues in your face/head due to how the trigeminal nerve (sensation to your face/head) and the sensory fibers of the cervical roots including C4/C5, C5/C6 interact with eachother further up the corticospinal tract.

    4. Well, in my mind, we're not sure what's wrong. You said that the weakness in your legs improved after surgery, is that true? Did they retest your reflexes? What was the result? Assuming you did have cervical myelopathy addressed by the surgery, then recovery is certainly possible. In some studies up to 75% of patients had good or excellent outcomes after myelopathy surgery (partial to complete resolution of symptoms). On the other hand, if this wasn't myelopathy, then I don't know how the surgery would have improved anything to do with your legs.

    I would definitely get to the bottom of if there is something else wrong. If that means seeing other Drs then I would do that. I would at least bring it up with your current Drs. If you were actually dragging your leg and tripping along with hyperreflexia, something significant was going on and you need to figure out if it's addressed or not. Perhaps a conversation along the lines of "Cervical nerve root issues don't cause symptoms in the legs, what do you think is causing them and what can we do about it".

    Good luck and let us know what happens...

     
    Old 03-06-2015, 08:47 AM   #3
    mario5
    Newbie
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Mar 2015
    Posts: 4
    mario5 HB User
    Re: Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

    Hi ChuckStr,

    Thanks a lot for the information!

    1. Yes, I did pay for the whole thing. It was the only option for double disc replacement that was FDA approved. The operation was done in Taiwan though. A month after surgery I went back to the surgeon and had an x-ray. Everything seemed ok. Entering the fifth week post op the pain in my right arm came back and now it's been almost 7 weeks and the pain is exactly the same as before surgery. I've been suspecting that the compression wasn't only on the nerves but also affected the spinal cord, which would explain the legs weakness and shaking, bladder problem, pain in my arm, lip shaking (can't explain this one).

    2/3. If myelopathy is the case, shouldn't the operation have fixed the problem by now? I've heard that spinal nerve heals better and faster than spinal cord. Is this correct? Also, after a year of being compressed, can I be realistic about my chances of healing?

    4. I haven't done any exams post surgery. I am positive that the weakness in my right leg has diminished. Before surgery I felt weakness walking down the stairs but now it's normal. It's the drag that's still there. The robotic walk (right leg). It goes away when I warm up though.

    I have an appointment with a neurologist tomorrow and with a neurosurgeon next week. Hopefully someone will have an answer.

    A million thanks!

    Mario

     
    Old 03-06-2015, 09:18 AM   #4
    teteri66
    Senior Veteran
    (female)
     
    Join Date: Nov 2010
    Location: USA
    Posts: 9,198
    teteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB Userteteri66 HB User
    Re: Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

    Disc replacement would not necessarily address all the issues that might be causing nerve compression or even spinal cord compression. It just depends what else was done in connection to the surgery. Also, even when everything is properly decompressed, all symptoms do not necessarily go away.

    You are smart to get things looked at. Please let us know what you learn.

     
    Old 03-06-2015, 01:03 PM   #5
    ChuckStr
    Veteran
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Apr 2014
    Location: seattle wa USA
    Posts: 406
    ChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB UserChuckStr HB User
    Re: Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

    Yes, as Teteri66 said, ADR would not necessarily address all the issues. In general, even if everything was decompressed, 7 weeks isn't very long to get neurological function back especially after being compressed for a year. Many people recover over a year or more.

    If it were just that you had myelopathy and then had decompression surgery the most likely answer would be that you need to wait longer and see what happens. You have a couple of twists though in that you had 2-level ADR and there was no reported compression even though you had myelopathy symptoms and at least some resolved with the surgery. That is definitely worth following up which it sounds like you are doing. Are the people you are seeing now connected with the original ADR surgeon? It may be better if they aren't so you get unbiased information.

    Did anyone other than the radiologist read your MRI? Not the report but the actual images. Generally(not 100% for sure), if you were having the symptoms you say and they were caused by myelopathy you'd see some pretty significant compression. If you have the report/images I'd be interested in taking a look if you want.

     
    Old 03-08-2015, 10:44 AM   #6
    mario5
    Newbie
    (male)
     
    Join Date: Mar 2015
    Posts: 4
    mario5 HB User
    Re: Cervical Hernia - Double Disc Replacement

    All the doctors that I've consulted post surgery (besides the doctor who did the surgery) have been from another hospital. One of them was a pain specialist. He was also curious how cervical hernia C4-5-6 could affect my lower extremities. And he also found it unusual the pain that was affecting me. He says that normally the pain is throughout the arm and not a spot here and a spot there (back of hand and top of forearm). He prescribed Tofranil 25mg to help with the pain and will see me again in a week. I have not taken that medication yet because I don't see the point. I don't feel that temporary pain reliever is the solution.

    The next day I visited a neurologist. Finally, he says that the MRI shows some compression on my spinal cord. It should be grey but it was white, which indicates compression. The doctor said that it is possible that the pain comes and goes and it may take up to a year for the spinal cord to heal. He wouldn't tell me statistics nor my chances of getting back to normal. He prescribed Lexotan 3mg to help control the shaking. I'm not sure if I want to take those pills as I've read some serious side effects comes with the package.

    All the doctors read my MRI.

    What I haven't been able to understand is the spotted pain instead of the entire arm. The pain is actually getting worse than before the surgery since yesterday. What is worrying is the hyper reflex. I can't imagine driving and someone honks at me and nerves go crazy causing an accident.

    I will upload the MRI images as soon as I get it back from the hospital (left it there on my last visit).

    PS. Is it normal to feel like a choke on my neck? Is it something normal after surgery? It feels like there's a finger touching my adam's apple 24/7 and I'm wondering if that's what's causing my sleep apnea (diagnosed about 10 days ago).

     
    Closed Thread




    Thread Tools Search this Thread
    Search this Thread:

    Advanced Search

    Posting Rules
    You may not post new threads
    You may not post replies
    You may not post attachments
    You may not edit your posts

    BB code is On
    Smilies are On
    [IMG] code is Off
    HTML code is Off
    Trackbacks are Off
    Pingbacks are Off
    Refbacks are Off




    Sign Up Today!

    Ask our community of thousands of members your health questions, and learn from others experiences. Join the conversation!

    I want my free account

    All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:18 PM.





    2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved.
    Do not copy or redistribute in any form!