Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Post ACDF nerve pain after PT???

MBMMB Posts: 13
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:01 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I have been reading these posts from everyone since I first decided to have ACDF (c5-c6), but now feel desperate enough to post! I am now 7 weeks post op and was slowly doing better until last week when I was allowed to:
-remove the (soft) collar
-drive again
-start PT for muscle pain
I told the NS asst I was having some nerve pains at the post op appt and she said its most likely from the muscular pain I have been experiencing post op. Well, its more like the electric zippers that last a second or a short sharp pain like I had after the discogram that was definitely nerve-related.
Since that appt a week ago, I went twice to PT and only had massage and ultrasound treatment, no exercise; and also have had the collar off and have driven at least once a day since (have 3 kids). Now I am worse than ever. I have all kinds of nerve irritation going on all over the place, up and down both arms, down my back and places where I didn't have it before. I am back on vicodin which only helps minimally, and now any activity makes it worse.
My muscle pain has always been more aching and burning in nature, which I also still have, but expect at this point. How do I know if this new pain is muscle or nerve? Has anyone else experienced this when limitations were lifted??? I am just scared they aren't going to go away, and if I should go back to the collar and not driving for longer? (I did have one other surgical opinion that said my other discs could go from the strain of the fusion. Hoping its not that either.)
Any feedback would be SO appreciated! Help


  • I was told that muscle and nerve pain are so difficult to separate and distinguish because their relationship has been hard to define. Having said that, you should not drive yourself crazy trying to figure out what kind of pain you are experiencing. I am 1 year post-op and am experiencing sensations that I never felt before. It's all part of the healing process. Whenever you are in doubt, call your doctor.

    My pain increased once I start to "live" the way I was before surgery. I am 1 year post-op and still in pain, but I am in LESS pain than before surgery. You are still early in recovery, so be patient and know that patience will get you through this. Contact your surgeon with your concerns. Keep us posted!
    2011 ACDF C5-6 for Spondylosis with Myleopathy
    2012 L4-5 herniated disc and hernated disc at C4/5 2013 Taking Amitriptyline for headaches
  • Thank you so much for your reply, I am one of those "knowledge is power" type of people and I know I should just focus on patience and healing. It really helped to hear from someone who has been through it, I guess I just got nervous it was a new pain with greater frequency all of sudden. Must be my body just telling me its too much too soon. These zappy twinges just feel so nerve-like compared to my achey upper trap and scapula pain.
    I will call the NS tomorrow as well.
  • I'm not saying that you should stop educating yourself with what's causing your pain. Make sure you are not doing too much. You "new" pain could be something of concern. That's why you should always consult with your doctor.

    Nerve pain can also be caused by tight muscles. Have you tried self-massages with a tennis ball or going to see a massage therapist? Muscle spasms are common after spine surgery. Try not to worry too much, since it can cause more pain! Hang in there!
    2011 ACDF C5-6 for Spondylosis with Myleopathy
    2012 L4-5 herniated disc and hernated disc at C4/5 2013 Taking Amitriptyline for headaches
Sign In or Register to comment.