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Having ADCF in two days

BgravesAUfanBBgravesAUfan Posts: 6
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:45 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am having multi-level ACDF surgery on Monday June 28th. I am anxious to have it done but am also terrified! Just need some reassurance!!!


  • I'm having a fusion with instruments at L3/4 & L4/5 on Tuesday, so I know how concerned you are. I hurt all the time except when sleeping so it's hard to get the things done that I need to get done. I do have a very supportive husband and daughter which really helps. I have been using the list at the top of the board for pre-op and post-op and have found it very helpful.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,110
    I can tell you my experience and remember everyone is different but from the moment I woke up the arm pain was GONE! I stayed overnight in the hospital and was kept medicated and comfortable. Once I was released to go home there was one thing I found I could not live without and that is straws. I had to wear a brace for 6 weeks, soft collar while sleeping and hard collar while up. Since this is the summer months Ill tell you an idea that was given to me, my hard brace really began to stink around 4 weeks so someone suggested putting a odor eater foot pad lined in the back of my brace and it worked great. Do you know if you will have a brace? Some docs require while others do not. The first week at home I rested. After that I began walking daily ( You would not believe how much this helps the stiffness ) I think you will amazed at the relief upon waking, I hope your experience was as smooth as mine and good luck!
    Feel free to ask any questions you might have.
  • I had an acdf June 8th, almost three weeks ago, wow the arm pain shoulder pain, thumb and forepinger pain all gone! I am so glad I had it done. I had my surgery at 11:30 and was home by 7:30 that eve. Hard collar by day and I could sleep without anything or as my ns said sleep however is comfortable. The first night I slept with the collar on. Remember after you feel better not to do too much, I still have muscle spasms and still take soma for those. I did feel like a truck had hit me the day after surgery but I would do it all over again to feel like I do now!! I had acdf 4-6. Good luck, hope you feel better soon. Lela

  • I can't comment on an ACDF but I had a lumbar fusion 14 weeks ago. I am so glad that I did have the surgery. I am so much better than before and am looking forward to getting back to a normal life soon.

    I have read lots of stories of successful cervical fusions, and am sure that people will post here to encourage you. I have noticed that the recovery from cervical fusion is much quicker than lumbar fusion.

    I have seen cervical patients come and go and been amazed at their quick recovery and return to work.
    Generally they say that their symptoms are gone when they wake from surgery, and all they have to deal with is a very sore throat for a few days and the surgical wound soreness.

    Hoping that your surgery will be completely successful, and that you will be one of the people who post here with a good story of how much better you are feeling.

    Do let us know how it goes :-)
  • Welcome to Spine-Health. You'll find a lot of information on this site, and the members of the forum are friendly, knowledgeable and supportive. I'm glad you found us.

    I had a 3-lvl ACDF (C4-7) in Oct. 08 and like others have said, I also woke up with all my pre-op symptoms gone. I was only in the hospital one day and the recovery went well. It can be a long recovery, but not too bad in terms of pain and such for some of us.

    There are also many members here that will tell you that the anticipation is worse than the surgery itself, me included. My doc gave me some Xanax in the weeks leading up to surgery to help my nerves because I was also terrified. But all went well and I'm hoping all goes well with yours as well.

    Don't hesitate to PM me if you have any questions or just want to vent to a fellow neckie.

    Take care and ask any questions you need to here. Also, check out the Post-op must haves at the top of this section. You won't need everything, but some things come in very handy, like the grabber tool and straws.

    Again, welcome to Spine-Health.
  • I appreciate all the positive comments. I am just so nervous but know it is the right thing for me to do. I am worried about sleeping afterward, although I can't sleep much now anyway. I am just exhausted, in pain and ready for relief. Also concerned about the swallowing thing! But sounds like for most everyone, this is just temporary and more annoying than painful. I do have a supportive husband and my two girls will be helpful as well. I will even have my mom for a few days!! Thanks for the comments about the straws! I had not thought of that but makes so much sense.
  • Hi, I just wanted to let you know I had mine almost a year ago. I was glad to have it and sleeping afterwards I had a soft collar and actually I slept good. I just used alot of pillows :) You will learn what works for you and it may take a couple tries. The swallowing for me was gone by a couple days just felt like a sore throat (a bad one) but some continue for longer and some just a couple days. I found drinking alot of liquids worked. When I had mine I was kept overnight just in case of infection, but was out by the next day. I had issues with the morphine it made me vomit if I stood up that was my biggest issue. I hope all goes well for you and I know its easier said then done but relax and have a positive attitued. Keep us informed once you feel like posting :) Lori
  • BGraves,

    We will be thinking of you tomorrow. Hope that all goes well and that you wake up aware that your old pains have gone.

    Once you are able to post here, do let us know how you are doing. We will be here waiting for you :-)

    Allow your husband and daughters to spoil you :D
  • Wishing you the best tomorrow and hoping that you have a good day today!

    Spoil yourself today!

    Will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.

    Looking forward to hearing how it is going when you feel up to posting!

    Take care!
  • I will keep you in my thoughts that all goes super! I had INSTANT relief when I awoke from my C5/6 - it was so good, I had happy tears! Here's praying that you find similar results!!


    So glad to see you are coming along fantastically! I knew you were doing good, but great to SEE your post confirming it! Congrats!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Thanks again to everyone's positive comments. I will post as soon as I can! It is 1 am and I can't sleep....nerves!!!!! Hope to be able to let you guys know my status very soon!!
  • BgravesAUfan said:
    Thanks again to everyone's positive comments. I will post as soon as I can! It is 1 am and I can't sleep....nerves!!!!! Hope to be able to let you guys know my status very soon!!
    Handing over some hot cocoa. Drink this and sleep well. Supportive *HUGZ* Now off to sleep woman!!! Good luck! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.

  • I hope that you managed to get to sleep after the hot cocoa that Brenda gave you! :-)

    Very soon, you will be on the other side of surgery, and on the way to a more comfortable life.

    The early days will be tough, but you can do it! :D
    Once you are over the worst bit, I hope that you will be very glad that you had surgery.

    We'll be waiting here for news, once you are able to post. We'll encourage you all the way to being recovered. :D
  • Howdy!!!

    I am hoping that now the surgery is over and you are back in your room realizing a bunch of pain is gone!!! Sending positive energy your way woman!!! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • OK - SO day 4 post-op and it has been really rough! Today is first day that I have felt like posting or doing anything for that matter. Then I find out today that the office I have worked for for ten years has decided to close! So now I am miserable and unemployed. UGH! So not such a good day. Hoping for a better tomorrow. Then also wanted to ask about this left arm weakness. I cannot lift it very far but had no problem before surgery?! Also my throat doesnt actually hurt but I am having lots of trouble swallowing. Almost like it is paralyzed but not sore....make sense anyone? Not sore at all but choking so easily on stuff.....would love to hear from you all.
  • I am having ACDF at the end of July. My spinal cord is severly compressed by c34/c56 and they are removing both disc and raplacing with donated bone. I have had lonf term lower back issues, but about three months ago I suddenly had numbness and tingling pain in left arm and both legs. They tell me that the compressed spine can cause many future issues if I do not do this. MRI shows even no spinal fluid in one area. I have gone to two suergons with the same result. I am scared and I wondered if anyone have heard of the risks of not having the surgery or can offer me any advice or opinions. It's not just about pain, but the concern of the compressed spinal cord. They also tell me I have a double disc issue in mt lower back, but this is more important now because of the spinal cord compression. All responses will be appreciated.
    AL in Cincinnati
    AL S
  • Hey AL - this is very similar to my situation. The spinal cord being suppressed was the urgency in my situation. I had five bulging discs. Two of the discs were suppressing C spine so much and already had pain, numbness and tingling in both arms. I did all the PT and any other conservative measures I could. Your cord suppression in same place as mine. Was also having pain up into the back of my head and starting downward. My NS told me that if I let it go that eventually it could affect my legs and other organs/functions. I woke up from surgery with no numbness or tingling in my arms! I found this site only a few days before my surgery but it has been a wealth of information and everyone has been so kind and wonderful to share their experiences and tips for post -op care! I do hope that it goes well for you!!!! Keep us posted
  • thank you so much for the response, it is nerve racking but I'm hanging in there.


    AL S
  • hey, i am also in the same boat as you were. i am scheduled for surgery aug. 4 and i am a nervous wreck!!! I had to put it off due to work and I am miserable but i completely understand your pre surgery anxiety, i was reading your post and was very glad to hear you r better!! please if you have any details about the surgery or recovery plz let me know or you can pm me. I am having C5-6 done good luck!!
  • You can count on it, so hang it there.

    Good luck and I'll let you know what happened in the last week of July
    AL S
  • I am having ACDF at the end of July. My spinal cord is severly compressed by c34/c56 and they are removing both disc and raplacing with donated bone.

    My doctor says this is required to prevent the possiblity of irreversable paralysis. Has anyone heard of this as a prevenative measure to future problems, if so would like your imput please.

    Some of my arm and leg pain which was like neuropothy has been controlled by a medication called oxacarbizine and the rest which is primarily lower back and legs whith percocet. There is still pain of course.

    They told me that the cervical surgery was a prority due to the dager of paralysis due to some trauma that might befall me or spinal changes putting more pressure on the spinal cord it self which is alreay being squeezed.
    thanks for any replies,

    Al from Cincinnati
    AL S
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