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Recovering from C6/C7 ACDF and C7 Corpectomy

earth2robineearth2robin Posts: 51
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:01 AM in Recovering from Surgery

I am 2 weeks post-op from an ACDF and corpectomy with a titanium cage on the C6/C7 level and wanted to know if how I am feeling is normal. It is still really difficult for me to swallow and eat solid foods [( . My voice is still hoarse as well, I can't speak for more than a couple minutes at a time before it goes out all together. Also, while some problems from my cervical myelopathy have been resolved from the surgery, the neck, shoulder, and arm pain seems to be worse. The doctor said before the surgery we were having surgery to halt the progression, that the surgery would not necessarily resolve everything due to the length of time my spinal cord was compressed :S . At this point the swelling seems to have gone done a lot, although I am still only functional through use of my pain medicines.

I guess I am curious to know how others felt at this point in their recovery after this procedure. Did you have your voice back? Could you eat solid foods? When did you know you were resolved to live with chronic pain? Did you hurt worse before surgery or after? Did your symptoms get better or worse?



  • One important thing to understand about your surgery is as your surgeon said the myelopathy is with you for life, and surgery was done to stop the progression of the symptoms. As far as the pain in your arms still give it some time. Some will wake from the surgery with the pain gone some will have to wait to see what happens. Stay optimistic that it will get better and sometimes it can take up to two years to turn around. Just one day you may wake and think wow that doesn't hurt as bad. Don't measure your success in days but rather by the weeks. I do hope you have engaged in a good walking program. If you haven't you can look on the net and find some. One of my favorites is 10,000 steps. But it is so important to get out and begin walking. It is about the only exercise you should be doing, and you will begin to strengthen your core body, which will take some of the pressure off the other areas.

    As far as the voice issues, try some simple humming exercise to gradually strengthen your voice. For foods you want to work your way up to the harder things. The fact your voice is working, says there was no damage in surgery, but your just rather weak. It more than likely won't become a concern of the surgeons till the 3 month mark. Keep in mind you are early in the recovery phase and your body needs to get used to the new way you spine is going to work. If you need the meds to get you going then use them, and you can work a tapper eventually. Now most certainly if your still in the same pain just following surgery you might want to place a call to the surgeon, but if it has lessoned some then hang in there, your on your way.
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