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previous ADR, new problem

marymarymmarymary Posts: 2
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:58 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi, Almost 4 years ago to the date I had ADR for level c6-7. I participated in a study and had 99% success, only having pins and needles if I looked up. I never had neck pain or weakness with that ruptured disk, just horrible forearm pain that did not improve. Mid september I awoke with a horrible stiff neck and pain in my shoulder. The pain was very similar to the arm pain I had previously so I went to see neurosurgeon who did my ADR. I had an MRI but did not get great pictures and he wanted a myelogram with contrast and ct. I had reservations about the myelogram (dont come at me with needles from behind) so doc sent me to PT. I had 8 weeks of PT and very much improved pain wise. Still some shoulder pain that is tolerable. A couple weeks ago I could not lift something and brought it to PT's attention. He tested my strength and my shoulder is very weak. I cannot lift any weight over my shoulder level. It is difficult to put dishes away or put groceries in the pantry. I still have pins and needles in my upper arm at times. I also have some incontinence. This is more of an urgency thing. My bladder says go now! and I won't always make it to the bathroom. This is now a daily occurance. I'll run some water in the sink, or step out in the cold and my bladder responds with urgency. Early on I had taken a pain pill and drank some alcohol and got very ill and seriously wet myself when I threw up. (puddle on the floor) I know better than to drink with meds but was in a lot of pain and the pill didn't touch the pain. Are these the bladder symptoms that can happen or is it a menopause thing as I'm 54 and started that business this year. I see neuro tomorrow and have decided that I want to have the myelogram and ct. When I had the ADR at c6-7 It was noted that I had herniation at 3-4 and 4-5. If I need surgery at 4-5 how will it affect the ADR? Can I have another ADR? Anyone with an ADR have surgery on another level? Thanks for any replies.


  • First let me say welcome Mary, have a look around there a few here with ADR's. As far as your bladder issues, typically a urologist would do a work up first to find the issues and it could or couldn't becoming from the spine. The work ups aren't horrible, but as to why it is happening needs to be addressed by a urologist and i would think the nuero will want that also.

    As far as your question can they do another ADR, well that would first be if your a candidate for it, and the condition of your original ADR. The myelogram sounds like to me it needs to be done, to find out what is going on for sure. Actually having several of them myself, it is not as bad of a procedure as it sounds. If you have issues with needles they can give you something to calm you down, or they can sedate you. I personally choose to be awake as I don't like waking up from it. Once the neuro has the information he/she will be able to tell what is the best procedure at this point and time. Given he already does ADR's, I am sure he would like you use one if possible, to preserve your ROM.

    Just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health. Look forward to hearing what happens at your appointment today.
  • Thanks for the reply. I'm assuming the myelogram needle stick is similar to an epidural which I have had before. However, my last epidural (20yrs ago) was a nightmare. I have this huge fear of having a meltdown like I had last time. Very different this time as I won't be in labor or be sick. I just need to buck up and be a big girl about it. I'm very anxious about all of this. My ADR surgery and recovery was a breeze and I have great faith in my neurosurgeon. I was happy to get the ADR, it made more sense to me than fusion and now I'm worried I'll need fusion and the ADR complicates things. C4-5 is my trouble spot now, but c3-4 looks just as bad on mri, but gives me no symptoms. I don't want to earn frequent flyer miles with this neck issue. The reason I ask about the bladder is because I have told no one about it and sort of wanted to know what sort of bladder issues people have with cord compression. I have no other problems, no problems with my legs or numbness other than pins and needles in my arm. I was really hoping that with PT and pain clinic I could deal with this issue without surgery. Who knows, maybe doc will give me more time and see if strength returns. The weakness developed about a month into this, just about the time the pain improved. So I am somewhat bummed about this, having had such good progress with PT. At least I got a home TENS out of it and for me it worked very well. Are multi-level ADR's approved now? I know I can't be the only person out there to have another level go belly up after an ADR. My appointment is in a couple hours and will have a plan on how to deal with this. Thanks for the welcome and support.
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