I am new here and am seeking some advice from others who may have had posterior cervical fusions.
I have had 3 ACDF's, c5-c7, c4-c5, c3-c2 with new plating at c4-c5. All surgeries due to various herniation's.
The last two surgeries failed, and I have several broken pieces of hardware.
I have had chronic pain in the neck, arms, shoulders and hands for years which is gotten more severe over time. I do see a PM and have since the first surgery for my neck as well as other medical conditions I have.
Recently I went to see a new neurosurgeon regarding the status of my c-spine and what, if anything, can be done. I have had several injections which did not work and one doctor has suggested a spinal cord stimulator but before following through with it I wanted to be sure it was in my best interest for my current problems.
The new surgeon I have spoke to twice, once last summer and again recently. Based on older MRI findings (about 2 years old) and a CT the new surgeon has order he is proposing to fuse me posterior from C2-T2, 7 levels with BMP (which I hear is off-label use for that many levels). he feels my neck is unstable and there are many new or old unaddressed herniation's as well as psuedoarthrosis, and other issues (unfortunately I do not have the report from the last CT).
I have spoke to a few individuals, including my PM who feel this is a rather large operation. I do have an appointment for a second opinion and may seek a third. I was told I'd be hospitalized for 2-3 days. He indicated the pain would be more severe, much like that of past hip replacements, but also feels it would be at least 95% successful. he said I would have a bone stimulator for 3 months as he feels they are of no use beyond that. I did have one for my last surgery but the doctor who did them all failed to order one for the 2nd surgery which is generally done.
I was told I would lose little to no range of motion which has come into question by another doctor. Additionally it was mentioned that this would be the last of the surgeries done on my neck because of the severity and all the levels it is covering. I guess the goal is to fix what the last doctor didn't and secure the c-spine and protect it from further damage.
I was wondering if anyone has had a similar surgery. I did see one person mention c4-c7. I was wondering what it was like post op and has range of motion come into issue. Currently I have lost some range of motion but not much and primarily due to the muscles. Has anyone had problems post op, months or years down the road? Does this many levels seem excessive?
I do have issues with healing due to a genetic disease as well as problems with sublexation and dislocation of joints which is a factor in the surgery. Many of the discs are now overlapping each other and have been for years.
Thanks very much for your time and I look forward to hearing from anyone who might have any sage advice or experience in this area.