Hi, My name is Phil from Mid Wales in the Uk.I thought I would just let anybody who is going to have surgery know of my experience in case it will help to put Their mind at rest.I am 52 and active, about 20 years ago I had a motocross accident which damaged C5 & C6 in my neck, I had tingling in the fingers for this time but about 18 months ago things got worse with the loss of feeling in three fingers in the right hand and burning under the forearm. Anyway I got booked into Birmingham Hospital to have C5 & C6 removed on monday 23rd Feb 2009 with trepidation after reading these forums.The surgeon said I would have problems swallowing etc but probably the worst thing would be the bone graft off My hip. I was in surgery for 2 1/2 hrs, when I came around I had slight discomfort on My hip so the nurse gave Me one pain killer.It is now 10 weeks on and this is the one and only pain killer I have taken. I have had no problems whatsoever, I realise I am very lucky and had a very skillful surgeon.My symptoms have not got any better but they said this might happen and the surgery was to prevent further damage not repair what has happened. In the UK we are not issued with any form of collar after surgery as they like us to keep the neck active. I was off work for a few weeks but active at home and have been back at work(engineering)for the last 3 weeks.I am now back on my motorcycle although I do use a proper motocross neck brace just in case. I hope this might help anybody who is going to go through a similar operation.