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4 Days Post Op From ACDF

CatsMeowBooksCCatsMeowBooks Posts: 1
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:54 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I had an ACDF C5-6, C6-7 and C7-T1 on Tuesday 6/28. Spent one night in the hospital. It has been 4 days since surgery. I'm feeling sick to my stomach quite a bit. May be from the pain medication even though I only take it with food. I'm taking 1-2 Hydrocodone/APAP 5 mg/500 mg every 4 hours for pain and 1 Methocarbamol 750 mg every 6 hours for muscle spasms. I'll be in a hard Aspen collar 24/7 for 8 weeks. A have some muscle spasms but overall think I'm doing pretty well for 4 days. When I move in my recliner chair, sometimes I hear my neck make a cracking sound. Do you think this is nornal? Also, do you think it is ok to sleep in bed on your side with the hard collar on? If I can just get rid of the nausea, I think I will feel much better. How soon do you think I should start to cut back on the medications? Any suggesstions, comments or words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated.


  • First let me say welcome to spine-health. Look around and you will find many whom have gone through surgery including myself.

    As far as can you sleep in your bed in the hard collar go for it, if it is comfortable for you. On two separate occasions spent 12 weeks in a hard collar and slept in my bed with it on. Actually I had to sleep with the collar once I free in the day time from it to hold my neck in proper position for 6 months. Most just find it uncomfortable, but I managed to get the pillows right and sleep in bed, and actually better than i had slept in a long time in the collar. As to cutting your medications back the one i would be skeptical on cutting back is the muscle relaxer, as with neck surgery that seems to be the hardest part to get past the muscle spasms. You can try waiting longer between doses on the pain meds and see how you do. But don't let yourself get in so much pain the meds have to catch up to you. so you might try taking the same dosage, but take it a hour later and see how you do. If your still fine then wait a additional two hours and so on. You can also only take one of the pills say at the 4 hour mark and see if you can go another two hours before taking the second pill. Like I say just don't get in so much pain your trying to catch up.

    Have you started a walking program yet? If your not sure where to begin look on the net and you can find some good programs. I particular like 10,000 steps. Walking is about the only exercise you should be doing, so walk as much as you can to keep your core body strength up.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health and welcome to the other side of post surgery. Be sure to follow all of your surgeons orders and hopefully before you know it you will be back to a normal busy life and all of this behind you. If there is anything I can do for you don't hesitate to pm me. Take care and keep us posted.
  • It was good to read that someone just had a 3 level ACDF. I am going next week. I have read that the nausea can be bad and I think it makes it worse when you have just had a neck surgery and your throat is not feeling the best.
    I have been really lucky the pain meds have never bothered my stomach and I hope that will continue after the surgery.
    Keep us updated.
    How are you doing during the day? i know that the nighttime must be tough. Hang in there. I know that I will be going through the same things all next week.
  • I had 4 level ACDF May 2. You could ask your doctor's office if there is anything you could use for your stomach. I already take some stomach med which seemed to help. I hate to see you cut back on meds if you're in pain. TamTam gave you good advice.

    I was in the hospital 4 days.(I have some esophogus issues which might have kept me one extra day). How is your swallowing?

    I sleep on my side almost all the time, and the same with the aspen collar. I fool with pillows so it's comfortable. I did the recliner for 1-2 nights. Recliner was good during the day to take pressure off the neck. I get some of the cracking sound, but I had some of that before.

    TAMP - best of luck.

    For both of you, ask any questions.

    4 level ACDF C4-C7 5-2-11, laminectomy & discectomy L4-L5 1/26/12, ALIF L4-5, L5-S1 12/10/12.
  • Hi! I just had an ACDF I think... 11 days ago. Mine was only one level though so much different.

    I had a lot of cracking noises too but mine were mostly coming from my t-spine area. I am going to ask my surgeon about that on my follow up visit.

    As for cutting back your pain meds.. It all depends on how you feel. Four days is really early. Can you call your surgeon's office and voice your concerns about it? Maybe they can prescribe something. 5/500 vicodin is pretty weak though.

    As for me now, I am taking my pain meds only at night. It all just depends on you and how much pain you are in.
    ACDF C4-5 June 23rd, 2011

    Another surgery in the near future. I am 26 years old.

    Current Meds- Norco 7.5/325, Cymbalta 60mg, Gabapentin, Adderall 20mg
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