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Singing after anterior cervical discectomy

sparkledctssparkledct Posts: 120
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:41 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Can anyone tell me how long it will take to get my singing voice back. It is really worrying me.


  • How long ago was your surgery? For some there is no voice issues and for others it takes a few weeks. Now in other situations where a nerve is involved or something happened to the cords it may take longer. There is always the risk that your voice will not come back as strong as it once was. I lost my a year ago January and while it is slow in the progress we have made some. I can go higher than a whisper now. Lots of therapy, steriods and scopes but progress is progress and I will take what I get.
  • I have not had the fusion yet. It is April 1st. I have talked to a few people that have had it and I am getting bad reports on the vocal recovery time. I am just trying to get something that is realistic.
  • I've had 3 cervical fusions and I can still sing! I'd say my singing voice was fine around 2 months after surgery. Band practice went well and I could still hit the same notes. Hope this helps.

    Faith M
  • Oh thank you. I am near tears thinking I will not be able to sing anymore. I am so glad to hear someone who's voice is ok. I am so darn worried...
  • I had an anterior cervical discectomy C4/5 and also 7 almost 4 weeks ago and I still cannot sing. I'm so upset and I keep trying each day to see where I'm at and it sounds horrible! If I can't ever sing again I don't know what I'll do! Has anyone else experienced this? This is killing me
  • I had a 2 level ACDF C5 - C7 and had no issues with my voice following the surgery .. I think everyone heals and recovers differently.
    Good luck with your surgery!
  • At about 6 weeks after my surgery I still could not sing and was panicing. Singing is a major part of my life. I figure it was around the 3 month mark when I felt I was starting to get my voice back. The hardest part for me after getting the singing voice back was getting my breathing back. That was probabaly harder than anything and is something I am still working on today at 10 months after my surgery!
    Hang in there - it WILL come back. It takes some work and some patience but it wil not be gone for good. :)
  • I never was a good singer! I can tell you that I have had C4-C5-C6 and C7 fused together. two different surgeries. Last one was 12-29-2010. I never lost my voice completely either time, had a sore throat for about a week with each surgery. I have had more problems with swallowing and feeling like there is something always stuck in my throat. I can sing anytime I like! It is trying to find the people that like hearing me sing is the problem. Good Luck! Hope everything turns out the best for you.
  • I'm not a singer, but I had 3-level ACDF a month ago, and I've had no voice issues at all. I hope all goes well for you, it is definitely possible!
  • BrigitBBrigit Posts: 1
    edited 11/30/2013 - 10:09 AM
    I had my fusion done in Oct 31, 2007. The surgery went great, until a week later they had to go back in because I had a clot form and I couldnt swallow, then started having problems breathing. They had to rush me in to surgery to remove the clot. I still have not regained my 1st Soprano voice, or my Soprano voice at all for singing. I can sing deeper but I have to hold my vocal cords to avoid cracking. Mine was C5-C6 fusion.

  • I had an ACDF of C3/4 and C4/5 done a year ago.
    I did have a very sore throat and some swallowing problems after surgery, but they passed, although I did create some interest from the doctors and nurses at the hospital because of the strange noises I would make when swallowing.

    At my 6 months check with the surgeon I asked about my singing voice as I could not sing. I sounded pretty awful, particularly the higher notes. My speaking voice was ok.

    He referred me to an Ear, Nose and Throat surgeon who videoed my vocal cords and showed me that the cord on the right (the side on my incision) was atrophied and not working. He said I had a superior laryngeal nerve paralysis.

    I went to vocal therapy and worked hard doing the exercises I was given. The exercises have really helped. My voice is not quite back to how it was but not far off. Mostly it sounds ok now and it is only the higher notes that I still can't sing.

    It was explained to me that the exercises I was given were to get the surrounding muscles to compensate for the paralysed vocal cord.

    You are a long time after your surgery now, but have you had your vocal cords examined?
  • I had surgery for the third time. My first was almost 8 years ago and all went well and my voice was just sore and recovered fine. I suffered a bad fall on my back this passed April and it caused severe damage to my nerves and discs causing problems walking and other things day after. I had 2 mayor surgeries back to back front and back of the neck. It has been a little over 6 months and i am having difficulties singing and even when i laugh or have long conversations, i feel restriction and at times problems catching my breath I saw the ENT Doctor and he told me that my vocal cords where not paralyzed good news, what he saw was accumulated acid reflux and well, swollen. I saw the specialist whom started me on nexium and it has relieved me some but not enough. I am so concerned i cannot imagine not ever singing again as i did before and being able to LOL without feeling such restriction and catching my breath every time. The specialist told me the acid reflux can cause all the issues i am experiencing and that it will get better with time. I am not convinced this is not normal what i am feeling! :(
  • dsartinddsartin TennesseePosts: 1
    I had cervical fusion exacty 2 weeks ago today.(2) discs. Only a whisper the day of surgery and a few days after. 
    I tried to sing today. Below the staff was pretty good but I could not hit middle c. It's getting better each day. I try to eat cold stuff every day. Ice packs are my friends. My thoughts are the more cold I can do the better I will be.
    Good excuse to eat popsicles. Lol
    I carry ice packs with me in a cooler when I leave home. I really think this has made a difference for me. 
    I had lumbar surgery 4 weeks before this

    Ice has been my friend. In my opinion it's the best non pharmaceutical thing you can do for yourself after surgery., And so simple
  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    Hello dsartin
    This is an old discussion created by a member who hasn't been on the  forum for a while so I am closing it.
    I suggest you create a new discussion using the link below
    Please click on the link for useful information

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
This discussion has been closed.
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