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MRI results/help for new member

GbutterflyGGbutterfly Posts: 3
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:56 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical

To give some background, I have recently received my MRI results following an incapacitating neck and shoulder pain in May/June this year.

The results are:
mild centreal disc prolapse at C3-C4 and C4-C5
prominent subacute left lateral posterior disc prolapse at C5-C6 compressing exiting left C6 Nerve.

I have been referred to an orthopaedic consultant and a pain management consultant, and have been told by my current doctor that my only options left are steroid injection or surgery. (absolutely do not want the injections)

Can anyone tell me what kind of surgery they would do for this, and how long I can expect to wait? I've gone from being a healthy active 30 year old to bedridden. To explain I have had no previous injury or trauma, initially this presented as shoulder pain so I was mis-diagnosed by GP/physio and treated for shoulder muscle spasm.

Can anyone give me more information?


  • To give more information, I've not responded to physio or nerve painkillers, in fact they made me worse.

    I'm currently experiencing

    o Intermittent numbness in right and left leg and feet with pins and needles.
    o Intermittent numbness in right and left arm and hands/fingers with pins and needles.
    o Occasional floppiness of left hand.
    o Clumsiness.
    o Pain and heaviness in left arm.
    o Burning hot and cold sensation in neck and upper back.
    o Pins and needles and prickly sensations on left side of face (cheek)
    o Difficulty sleeping, pain is increased by movement.
    o Unable to feel hot or cold intermittently on left arm and neck.
    o Electric sensations on face, left arm and left leg.
    o Frequent clicking and crackling sounds in neck.
    o Pain in top left of shoulder
    o Movement restricted, reaching, lifting, turning.
    o Inactive other than sitting at desk at work, completely immobile after work and not active with any other tasks.
    o Pain becomes worse as week increases, hysterical with pain at end of the week, complete rest and immobile with pain outside of working hours.
    o Depression.
    o Pain in neck is increasing, painful to touch.
    o Constipation, frequent urination and lack of appetite.
  • Fist let me say welcome to spine-health. Have a look around and you will find many other with your same situation or similar, including myself. As far as the surgery if it were offered up is normally ACDF(anterior cervical discectomy and fusion). Basically they remove the bad disc replace with some type of graph either allograft(cadaver), autograft(your bone), and then add some type of hardware either plate and screws, rods or mesh. Following the surgery depending on your condition and your surgeon may place you in a soft collar or a hard brace, and sometimes nothing at all depending on the stability. The incision is usually made on the front of the neck in the crease, so as it heals is not as noticeable. You can view a animated video in the video section of the procedure. Sometimes the insurance companies will require a round of conservative treatments before a surgeon can proceed depending on the findings. The pain your feeling down your arm is radicular pain meaning it is radiating out.

    If you look in the FAQ section at the top of the page you will find a link to 38 questions to ask a spine surgeon. I would go in with a list of questions, one if you were having surgery and one of your were not having surgery, so you prepared for the meeting. also I would take someone with you as two sets of ears are better than one. You might also want to setup a second opinion, now, so your sure of the choice your making. Also so you won't have so long to wait.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health, if there is anything I can do don't hesitate to pm me. Take care and keep us posted on your consult.
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