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Newbie needs help - ACDF or Disc Replacement

Please help...Ive been in constant pain since last September. The neck pain came on suddenly (I wasn't in an accident or anything). The pain is located on my left side only (shoulder blade, arm and hand). I was also getting numbness and tingling down my left arm as well but this has been less frequent since I stopped my desk job. I've applied for disability from my employer's insurer but still haven't been approved...but that's another story.

I've tried almost everything....physiotherapy, massage therapy, acupuncture, IMS...but nothing helps the pain. I've also tried a number of anti inflammatories, muscle relaxants and pain medications. I was recently prescribed Demerol but that's done absolutely nothing. Dilaudid appeared to dull the pain somewhat but not enough.

I recently went for an MRI and here are the results:

Multilevel disc herniations with focal protrusion at the C5-C6 and C6-C7 level resulting in left lateral recess and neural foraminal stenosis as a result with left C7 nerve root impingement and possible left C6 nerve root impingement. At the C3-C4 level I also have a eccentric posterior disc protrusion. Add to that is that I have Cervical Spinal Lordosis Reversal.

I'm assuming that I'm going to have some type of surgery so that I can get back to living a normal life. I would really like to be able to bike and golf like I did before.

I've been doing a bit of reading and noticed that there is a procedure where they replace your discs instead of fusing your spine.

Any thoughts on the different surgeries or on different pain medications would be greatly appreciated.


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