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acdf c5c6 12 wk post op ?

txmemaw5ttxmemaw5 Posts: 35
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:37 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
acdf c5c6 3 mos ago...with all hardware..
My question is: has anyone at this stage still have some symptons? I have started having spasms in the top of my right shoulder....seems like things go away in one area and start up new in another...NS just says all people are different and it's no time frame on the ending of this..I am still new from surgery????
Am I ever going to see an end to this procedure?
any response welcome!!!!
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Comments

  • My surgery was a 360 2 level alif at level l-5/s-1 9wks ago and I am still very fragile, feel week and vulnerable. My incision (ON my back) is still tender, but healing well, still only really wearing only my pajama bottoms, because everything else hurts my incision. I have to lay down frequently to rest, I do a bit of housework, always trying to not bend,life etc. I use my grabber all the time. I walk a mile a day, very slowly it seems to me (given I used to be a long distance runner!!!) and occasionally go to the store etc. I don't have much endurance, and tire easily. Also am still taking an obscene amount of pain meds and sleep is ever elusive and nights are often very long. Anyway, just a snapshot into my healing experience, at 9 wks. Sure hope it gets better soon!!! Hope you get better every day, I think having neck pain has to be worse than back pain and I wish you well.
    Rachel
  • We're at the same time frame but I had 4/5 5/6 and 6/7

    I don't have the shoulder or arm pain that I did. Now it's a guarding issue. My body wants to just stay in freeze mode so I have to tell myself to relax all the time! My shoulders and upper back like to stay super tight. The back of my head and neck burn and I have a dull ache at the bottom of my neck under 6/7

    I only take Tylenol. I'm working really hard at getting the strength especially in my upper back. I walk and it takes a good 20 minutes before I'm able to relax enough to make the walk enjoyable. My body is grabbing hard at the start of my walk. I have to say "relax relax" and start deep breathing.

    My doctor said it takes at least a year to feel as I'm going to feel. We are very early in the game.

    With a one level you should get more ROM than I will. I am very stiff.

    Even with these challenges I believe I made the right choice and have faith that when I heal more my body will relax and the pain will be very minimal if there is pain. It's a long process from a very invasive but needed surgery.

    You are not alone. I'm so glad to have this forum and people like you to talk to so I know that what I'm feeling is part of the process. It can get overwhelming sometimes and feels like there is no end.

    I hope you get help for your cramping and that all goes well for you.
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    I found I did have some muscle pain and spasms the more active I got after my ACDF. I went back to work at 6 weeks and felt relatively good but I seemed to get some new recovery symptoms (muscle stuff) around 10 weeks. I used muscle relaxants and sought out some massage when my doctor said that was okay.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • I want to thank u so much for ur response..I was beginning to feel like I was all alone..alot of responses have made me think I was the only one going thru some of this stuff..I have had a few bad headaches (NS took me off the bone stimulator, said it'd done what it was going to do after wearing it 6 wks faithfully)..it didn't but they are getting farther between now. It is discouraging to start to feel better for a few days , wake up one morning and something else aches, pulls or hurts.. I still take hydroco at least once a day..(tylenol upsets stomach)..I have good ROM on the left side, but not good on right, when I go that way it seems to pull the shoulder muscle. I too am walking, and it does help, not real stiff..got a treadmill (weather set in) so I am on/off it several times a day..NS still has me no lifting..go Nov 5 for first exrays..hope fusion has started...we'll see...
    I am sending u a hug and a prayer you get relief and feel better very soon..Keep me updated on ur progress..my granny always told me God doesn't give u more than u can handle...with ordeal it makes one wonder...We have got to have faith....Take Care.....I would like to add u as "My Buddy"
  • Hi there,
    Had my fusion 21 years ago and had the same problem. They gave me a steroid shot in the shoulder and that helped a lot. Doc said it was irritated because of the surgery. Maybe sugest this to your doc and see what he says.
    Hang in there. It take a long time to heal and to get strength back. I've had absolutely no problems except my right arm gets tired faster than left after using it to wash window, writing a lot, etc.
    Hope you have a speed recovery.
  • Sotired, thanks for still visiting and talking to us. How many levels did you have done? Was it cervical fusion? Have you had other surgeries after the one you had twenty one years ago?

    That's fantastic that you're doing well. That's an inspiration to me!
  • Isn't it great to have others to talk to about this stuff!

    I had a really tough time with my bone stimulator at first. I posted about it. I learned how to use it now and I hate it but I think it's helped me to fuse. I have to wear mine for six months maybe due to the number of levels I had done.

    Please let us know if you're fusing. I finally am fusing and that is so encouraging.

    I have the good day bad day thing too. Just when I say "hey this isn't so bad" I get my butt kicked with pain the next day. UGGGG

    I let my doctors voice come into my head and remind myself that it's a year before I start to feel normal. He told me two years before I'm as free as I will be.

    It's a big surgery but for those of us that need it a real life saver.
  • hi i am 18 days post op was feeling great for 14 days
    had an awlful pop in my neck on the opposite side that was hurting prior to surgery the numbness was gone the pain was gone couole of days after that pop i am hurting just like i was before the surgery my left arm and hand is getting numb and hurting in my shoulder and neck. i called my ns he said it could
    possibily be another level if symptons went away ok but if they did not to call him back and he would prescribe a short dose of steroids, i have not called them back yet i am afraid to do steroids so soon after surgery. i am now back to taking hydrocodone and flexaril twice a day. i feel like now ther surgery has absolutely not done anything for me. has anyone else had this problem???
    thanks, melody
  • hi i am 18 days post op was feeling great for 14 days
    had an awlful pop in my neck on the opposite side that was hurting prior to surgery the numbness was gone the pain was gone couole of days after that pop i am hurting just like i was before the surgery my left arm and hand is getting numb and hurting in my shoulder and neck. i called my ns he said it could
    possibily be another level if symptons went away ok but if they did not to call him back and he would prescribe a short dose of steroids, i have not called them back yet i am afraid to do steroids so soon after surgery. i am now back to taking hydrocodone and flexaril twice a day. i feel like now ther surgery has absolutely not done anything for me. has anyone else had this problem???
    thanks, melody
  • I'm 71 days out from an ACDF with plate/screws and cadaver bone on C5/C6. I think that what makes this recovery difficult is that with nerve involvement - the healing and symptoms are/will be different for everyone.

    For me - I had probably 2 decades of osteophyte growth compressing my nerves + recent disk herniation that meant I had moderate nerve damage and radiculopathy symptoms. Seems like for last 2.5 months, all my aches and pains of the last few years have been playing back like a recorder switch in "reverse". I take this as a good sign that the nerves are coming back.

    When I am asked how I feel - I honestly tell everyone that each day is better than the one before. My spasms in the middle back are less frequent. I wake up with a numb hand in the morning ever 3-4 days rather than everyday. I can work a 15 hour day now before getting uncomfortable - up from a 7 hour day.

    I honestly would just gauge this on an honest assessment of your progress. For me that includes relying on Tylenol infrequently and not taking any of the prescribed Oxycodone. This way I can honestly tell what hurts - and what doesn't. This has allowed me to accelerate my rehab, begin lifting weights - and next week I start working on my "core" (abdominals).

    I'm stiff, have to be very aware of my posture, but if I'm honest with myself the aches and pains are just like a bad workout...which is probably close to true as the muscles get used to the new alignment of my neck. Zero pain would be good...but I'm OK with less pain day by day. Pretty happy actually - so I would suggest you take your progress positively and not worry about where you are "not". Focus on the fact that you are moving ahead...and one day will wake up and realize that it has been weeks since you felt any real discomfort. Good luck and focus on that rehab - and stay positive!
  • I'm 3 months today 3 level and I've been doing light strength training since 5 weeks. All weight restrictions are gone for me now. I just can't lift over head.

    Crunches are out so I've been pretty creative with my core training. Are you working with a PT? I'd love to hear what you come up with that's safe for core body.

    I stopped my pain meds the first week and take limited Tylenol too. I think my recovery has been helped by that choice as well.

    I bet you're going to do great!
  • :< ACDF c5/c6..with hardware...replaced 2discs 1 vertabre...went yesterday for c-up & exrays..
    NS said has just starting fusing, he was pleased with the way things looked. He said the shoulder spasms are to be expected for some (mine considering what he did).. doing lots of walking..when the shoulder acts up take muscle relaxer and it eases...doesn't bother me every day..may go 2-3 days feel great and get up and I feel like I'm going backwards. I don't go back to him for 3 mos. unless I need too...I haven't done any PT..NS doesn't think it is necessary at this time...my ROM on the right side won't get any better he says..thankful it's on that side and not on my driving side..can turn head so far and that's it..just stops...weight limit is 15lbs now...He told me I am still in early stage of the game..be patient he says...but after awhile it is hard to be patient...I am proud u're doing better..Having someone to vent with is a blessing..my husband just doesn't know what we go thru..he says he can tell i'm getting better..but showing it and feeling it is another issue....Sending you only the best and hope things are improving for you...... :S
  • acdf c5c6 with all hardware..went to dr Mon..took exrays..NS said I looked good..fusion has just started..still early in game he says..I've not had any PT..NS doesn't think I need it..he says the shoulder spasms/etc are to be expected..time will take care of it..
    I am really tired of all this..thought by now I would be pain free..still taking Norco at least once a day..Tylenol upsets my stomach...I am limited to 15 lbs lifting..My ROM is really limited to the right..Left is fine..NS says the right won't get any better..I hope u r doing alot better..it is so nice to have someone to vent with..my husband just doesn't understand what we are going thru..he says he can tell I am getting better each day.."looks can be deceiving sometimes..right?...sending u a hug and a prayer...take care.... >:D<
  • 15 pounds is good. Is that total or in each hand?

    I had a lot of problems with my first PT so I changed and the new one is doing miracles! She's actually contacting my surgeon to make sure of her treatment.

    I have trouble with my left side. The new PT has me doing a some great exercises to loosen up my upper back and shoulders. Doing that is allowing my head to turn much better in just one day!

    She's also doing facia release which is amazing. I wish I would have had her instead of my original PT but at least I have her now.

    It's good to listen to your NS. Each case is different. My NS spends limited time with his patients so PT is very helpful now that I have a good PT. Hopefully your NS explains things to you better than mine does.

    My husband doesn't know how tough this is either but he's very supportive of me getting help. He makes me go to the doctor and makes me do what they tell me to do. He doesn't miss an appointment with the NS. He wants to know just what's going on. Love my Man ;)
  • Thanks for response..have thought alot about you...my NS keeps telling me everyone is different...the 15 lb limit is total..hope that changes soon...but I don't go back for 3 months..my husband is supportive..has gone to all appnts except this last one..he had surgery 2 wks ago and is laid up also...we are lucky to have them..he says I'm an impatient patient...true...NS isn't much on volunteering any info..if I ask a specific question he will answer..kind of aggravates me sometime so I gointo it with a list of ?'s.....keep up the good work and look forward to next time..sending u luck and a prayer.... :H
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