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5 weeks since discectomy with fusion on T6-T7

I thought I would give an update in the thoracic/upper back pain forum as well since today is my 5 week mark. I am actually doing quite well! I was pretty depressed last week wondering if I would end up struggling with chronic life long pain as I had went back and read every past post I could find from others that had thoracic disc surgery. Most of the people still experienced pain long after surgery which really concerned me especially considering I never really had much pain prior to surgery, I am seeing light at the end of the tunnel though as my pain level has greatly decreased over the past 4 days and my energy level and stamina is coming back. The tightness I feel in my lung is still there but I am getting periods of relief now there and relief from back pain. I do not feel any muscle weakness in my legs, (no more muscle spasms either). I just want to give people hope that may need the surgery one day. I think there is so much fear about it and I hope to relieve some of that. I am 39 and was in good shape with no previous health issues and no history of back problems outside of a small curve from scoliosis that never caused me any problems. I am still early in recovery but an extremely hopeful I will have a full recovery and normal life again. I am glad I did not wait until I had more damage and was falling or losing control of my bladder.

My success of the day: I loaded my dishwasher, cleaned up my kitchen and have not needed a pain pill yet today. I'm not over doing it and just adding some light chores as I can handle. I can't wait for 5 more weeks to go by!


  • That is awesome Paula. I am so happy for you and it is great to hear a positive outcome to thoracic surgery. I still have hope that one day my pain will diminish :)

  • paulayonoppaulayono Posts: 57
    edited 12/12/2012 - 4:27 PM
    Thank you Kelli. I still have a long road but i'm happy things are looking up much more now.
    I hope your pain is relieved, your still early on too, stay positive and know I'm here if you want to talk, vent etc. :)
  • dbhamddbham Posts: 42
    edited 12/12/2012 - 6:41 PM
    Glad is going great with your healing. Keep it up!!!
    L4/5 herniation13mm sequestered fragment L5 root compromise.
    L3/4 annular tear.
    L2/3 3mm bulge and annular tear.
    Tens mpo combo system
    Epidural L4 L5 28Nov12 / 12Dec12 / 26Dec12. All no relief :( SO FAR
    MicroD L4 L5 May 23 2013
  • Thank you! I'm happy to be going in the right direction :)
  • paulayonoppaulayono Posts: 57
    edited 12/14/2012 - 1:30 PM
    Hi Anelsen15

    This symptom came on lastly and really freaked me out. The orthopedic surgeons I had seen all asked me if I was off balance, fallen, or had muscle weakness. I never was off balance and never fell, in fact I had good balance, but suddenly I started feeling muscle weakness in the front of my thighs (both legs at the same time) and twitches here and there. It started to happen often and I got my surgery moved up from 12/18 to 11/6 because i was worried about it getting worse. I was hoping to prevent further damage. I am having twitchs off and on again ( no weakness though) and I read this is normal so I'm not to concerned. When was your last MRI to check your thoracic discs?
  • jellyhalljjellyhall Posts: 4,372
    edited 12/18/2012 - 11:30 AM
    I used to get lots of (and still get some) buzzing in my legs, especially my right leg. It feels just like a mobile phone on vibrate inside my leg!! I also get (and have had since my ACDF) a sort of electric pricking sensation that causes my leg to jump / twitch. Climbing up stairs is really tiring for my thighs, but mostly my legs are ok. I do get 'stiffening spasms' regularly in both my legs and also sometimes around my abdomen which cause me to make a sound as air is expelled from my lungs. Weird! I am hoping that all this will calm down with time. I do have discs protruding in my thoracic spine two of which are mildly compressing my cord. (That was on an MRI scan done in October 2011)

  • You are doing so well. I have talked to a few people who have had thoracic surgery and it is a difficult one to recover from. Be encouraged that things are looking very hopeful for you. I know that some days things seem slow and disappointing, but overall you are making an amazing recovery for so early on. The future looks bright!
  • paulayonoppaulayono Posts: 57
    edited 12/20/2012 - 8:25 AM
    Anelson, I can' say I know what the buzzing and wobbly feeling is like but I did have twitches/spasams and some muscle weakness off and on later.

    Thanks you Jellyhall, I appreciate the positive support. :) I drove for the first time since surgery today with my hubby. It felt great! I'm a bit stiff still so I agreed to wait it out a few more weeks and see how I feel then, just to be extra careful.
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