In August I had ACDF replacing C5-C6 with my own bone transfusion. I had problems originally with neck pain, left arm and hand numbness and chronic headaches. I woke up from the surgery in intense pain..below the c5-6 - in the spine right between the shoulder blades. They gave me Demerol and said it was muscle spasms. The pain resolved itself for a while.
At about 8 weeks or so, I realized that everytime I bent my head forward, my right pinky finger began tingling and then would just go numb. If I raised my arm to brush my hair or blow dry, I had the same problem. My doctor said it was muscle spasms.
I am now 8 months post ACDF and in incredible pain. My right shoulder feels like there is a pin or something poking into the center of the joint all the time. The pain radiates up the right side of my neck and down to the shoulder. I still have the problem with bending my head forward and NOW my hand burns above the thumb and pointer finger.
An EMG was done that indicated permanent damage from the C5-6 and then said something about the C7...when I asked the neurosurgeon he once again said "muscle spasms" and gave me a script for muscle relaxers. When he showed me the x-ray of the fusion which was successful, the vertebrae above the fusion looked like it was "wobbly" and out of place now. He performed an MRI and again said "everything is o.k., the fusion looks good" and dismissed me.
My GP has ordered another MRI on his own and said he was intending to send me to another specialist. This is miserable.
I can't figure out my question though. I guess I want to know if fusion surgery can cause an alignment problem and other disc issues. Oh- my original MRI analysis said "multiple bulging discs" but the neurosurgeon I saw only wanted to treat the disc that had actually ruptured and was completely gone. That was probably a good plan but now he looks at me as if I am from outer space when I complain about these problems.