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discouraged stopped PT

ileneiilene Posts: 140
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I started PT 6 weeks post op ACDE C5-6, went for the evaluation which I new was going to hurt, all exams do, but then I went for my first vist. While there she showed me some simple exercises, just turning my head U,D,L and R, and while turning to the Rt I felt pain in my head, she told me to continue. 2 hours after coming home I had a horrible headache, woke up with it the next morning. I called the PT to ask if I should cancel for the next day, she of course said no. My surgeon actually called me about something else, and I asked him about the PT, he said to cancel it and restart in 2 weeks.

I know I am better then I was several weeks ago, and that I am able to do a bit more, but there are still so many things I can't do, I feel as though for every step forward I seem to take another step back. I wonder if I will ever be pain free in my neck. I have head neck pain since 2000 when I herniated 3 discs, but since this was the only disc compressing the cord, and causing muscle damage, it was the only disc recomended by my surgeon to fuse. I went for 4 opinions prior to surgery, 2 surgeons said to do 1 level, 1 surgeon said 2 levels, another said 3 levels.



  • Hi Ilene,

    Keep in mind you still very early in the recovery process. While the pain of surgery is gone, you did have major surgery. It takes quit sometime to heal from the surgery. You are also in the process of fusing so you will get pain as well. In my experience it really is about a year. I know sounds like a long time. But in all reality it is not that long. Your muscles have been weakened so much and thy have a long way to go. Try to measure you success in a week not by each day. Take care.
  • RangerRRanger on da rangePosts: 805
    Hey Ilene,
    I so agree with tamtam and your surgeon. Listen to your body, don't push yourself as the healing process takes some time. You don't want to mess up your surgeons work and have to go in for repairs. Patience is the key here.
    Take care and hope all goes well for you!
  • Hi Liene!

    I'm just a bit a head of you and but have a 3 level ACDF. It is slow. I started PT at 6 weeks and I'm still in PT but about to stop. I was doing well with them and then they over stretched my neck which was not good. They have me lie on my back with my head in their hands and they move my neck to try to gain range of motion. I HATE IT!

    I think it has helped loosen me up but my insurance is about to cut off so I can't say I'm sad about not going for a while. I do the exercises you spoke of several times a day at home. I was really stiff and still am but I improve all the time.

    Correcting my posture is what has helped me the most! A good curve in my lumbar, chest up, lower abs tight, my neck retracted and soft knees and my world is better. I use good body mechanics when I do things too.

    One good thing to come out of this is going to be me using better body mechanics to save the rest of my back.

    Ask you PT to teach you as much as possible about that stuff. I drive my PT crazy I'm sure with all of my questions but I want to get better so there you go.

    You're not alone in. I'm recovering right a long side of you and am still feeling the surgery effects. I know a year is about what it takes but it gets better so the whole year is not like the first few weeks thank goodness.

  • Ilene,
    I know what you are feeling. I was in agony after PT. I felt they were very aggressive. I was up all night in pain on days of PT.
    My Physiatrist had me change to another therapist who went a little slower with me. It eventually was more tolerable to go to PT where I made progress.Just when I was making progress my insurance said I used up all of my visits and now I'm finised with PT even though I could benefit from more.
    Take your time and jump back in when you are ready.
    Good Luck!! Bethy
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