Hello all. I've really found this site to be very informative. This is my first post and would appreciate any thoughts or opinions
I have suffered with herniation and bulges in a few discs (mostly C5-C6) for about 5 years. I work at a desk for about 9 to 11 hours a day. When first diagnosed, I had frequent muscle spasms in the upper back, but after some disciplined physical therapy, these symptoms have gradually reduced. I have gone as long as 18 months without symptoms, but when the spasms do return, they typically take about a week to subside. I have responded well to epidural injections and other treatments - so in summary, my symptoms have been manageable.
Starting with an MRI in 2008, mild spinal cord compression was detected. This was also identified in additional MRIs in 2010 and late 2011. The first 2 MRIs showed mild cord compression; the last one shows mild to moderate. Each time my MRI was examined, the spinal surgeon stated that as long as I was asymptomatic, it did not make sense to have surgery. However, I got 2nd, 3rd, and 4th opinions on my most recent MRI and all 3 doctors (an orthopedic spine surgeon, a neurosurgeon, and my primary care physician) all said that I need a 1 level ACDF surgery ASAP - primarily due to the spinal cord being compressed (mild to moderate). They have stated that even though I don't currently have symptoms, it's just a matter of time before these come since my cord is compressed.
My original spinal surgeon still maintains the view that I should not have surgery b/c I don't have symptoms and when I do have symptoms, I have responded well to non surgical treatments. However, now that I have 3 other independent opinions stating that I need it ASAP, I am really confused.
Any insights / opinions would be most appreciated! I am scheduled for surgery in 2 weeks and have a newborn on the way - I want to make sure I'm making the right decision for both me and my future kid.