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Anterior decompression and fusion 2 level

ian_wiian_w Posts: 7
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:58 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I am due to have an operation this month for Anterior cervical decompression at C5/6 C6/7 its a 2 level operation in which they are going in through my throat and then fitting 2 peek cages and fusing. I was just wondering if anyone has had a similar procedure and can offer any advice or anything at all really. By trade I am an electrician and test engineer working with very big heavy duty SWA cable, will I be able to continue with this even though at the moment I have lost so much strength and have experienced a lot of muscle wastage. What am I to expect after the operation and what sort of times are there for recovery, I have been told 6 - 12 weeks is this realistic? I am told I will have to ware a neck brace for 6 weeks.

Thanks in advance.


  • There are lots of people here who have had ACDF, and the levels that are affecting you are very common.

    I haven't had cervical surgery, but am trying conservative methods to put off surgery.

    There is a list on the Back and Neck surgery thread, at the top, that suggests items that will help you during recovery after surgery. The list is very long, and some of the items are for lumbar surgery, but it will give you some idea of the issues you may experience.

    A grabber, bendy straws and soft, easily swallowed food are essential. Ice cream seems to help many and throat lozenges and laxatives are often on people's list of things that helped them.

    Others who have experience this surgery will be along to share their experiences with you.

    Welcome to Spine Health. This is a great place for information and support.

  • Hiya, thanks for your reply I also suffer from L4/L5/L6 problems which I have RF treatment as a means of pain managment but as of late I feel thet I am becoming a cripple at the age of 46. I worry for when I get older and less agile.
  • HI Ian,

    First let me say welcome to spine-health. Have a look around and you will find in the neck forum that the procedure your having is the most common surgery as far as neck surgery goes. It sounds as though your doctor has told you spot on, about the length of recovery. One thing is when you do come out of the brace at the 6 week mark, you might find yourself with more pain and discomfort, but that is the muscles responding to the brace. Many whom have had this surgery, have little discomfort post surgery and tend to do to much, to only suffer set backs, so follow all of your surgeons restrictions.

    Talk to your surgeon about when physical therapy would be safe, so you can begin working on, the muscle strength you have lost. One of the best things you can do post surgery is walk, and walk so more. This will help keep up your core body strength.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health. keep us posted and ask any questions you may have.
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