Hi! I've been reading your stories and appreciate your willingness to share.
I have several issues with my neck. I'm facing a tough decision, do nothing and perhaps have nerve damage, get a 3 level ACDF or a posterior foraminotomy. HELP!
I had a sport injury about 17 years ago that herniated my C7 causing a lot of weakness in my left arm. I chose not to have surgery because I'm such an active person I was afraid I'd cause lots of damage to the adjacent discs. I worked hard with a PT and got most of my left arm use back.
I've struggled off and on with pain from my neck but it would go away after traction, rest and ice in about 2 or 3 weeks.
About 6 weeks ago my neck went crazy. I couldn't get in or out of bed without screaming. I got an MRI and about passed out. 4 of my 7 cervical discs are messed up!
My PT got me to the point of just a tooth ache in my neck. My husband made me go to a surgeon. The surgeon said I have to decide whether to live with this and maybe do nerve damage, get a 3 level cervical fusion or do a posterial foraminotomy.
The surgeon suggest the 3 level fusion so he can fix the problem and prevent more damage. He said it may not relief the pain but will prevent nerve damage. It will cause stress on the other discs so a chance of more surgery is there. He doesn't think the foraminotomy stands a good chance of working. It could but he doesn't think so and believes I'll just be facing another surgery later.
My husband wants me to go for some more opinions which I will do. The surgeon has done work on a few people I know and they say he's really good.
I'm still very active so the thought of a long recovery freaks me out! If anyone could share their recovery experience after a 3 level ACDF I'd really appreciate it.