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still in pain 1 year after acdf

Hi im new to this site !! I dont know what to do as im still having trouble 1 year post op acdf. I had my surgery 1 year ago i ended up in casualty at 2.30 am by ambulance. I had acute pancriatitis bought on by taking medication for the pain in my neck. The second night in and i caught pnomonia and had a blood disorder aswell. On top of this my neck was killing me. They could finally do the op so i had an acdf 4 5 6 7 . I had a bone fusion taken from my hip bone and and a double plate put in. I sufferd extremely bad muscle spasms in my right side of my back after surg. Anyway 1 year on and im still having probs. When i do anything physical like cooking , housework, reading a paper anything looking down my neck gets really tight i lose my voice and find it hard to swallow. I have to lay down with heat pads and muscle relaxents. Im going crazy !!! Any help in whats going on ???? :-D


  • You should speak with your surgeon if your insurance will let you go back in for a consult. You might also want to look into a Pain Management Specialist. That is the route I ended up having to take but the procedures he has done so far have help a great deal. Yes they put you on some drugs but they aren't the "drug dealers" that people have historically viewed pain specialists as.
  • I had a bone scan 17months after my acdf c4/c5 and c6/c7 just recently and it has said
    moderate increased tracer uptake confined to the bone graft in the c6/c7 disc space with an apparent defect in the mid section of the bone graft. I note that the operation was done 17 months ago an at this stage it may represent early reactive non union of the bone graft. im still in a lot of pain and im wondering if anyone knows what this might mean ?? : (

  • I am sorry to hear that you are still in pain 17 months after your ACDF.

    Can you go back to your surgeon and talk to them?
    I don't know what increased tracer uptake confined to the bone graft indicates, but if it may show non union of the bone graft, you really need to see a spinal specialist / neurosurgeon.

    I understand how hard it is after so long to still be in pain.
    I had an ACDF done a year ago and am still having most of my pre-surgery symptoms.
    My neurosurgeon is referring me back to see a neurologist to check that there isn't something else going on too.

    I have read of others who have had a non union after a fusion and continuing pain is generally why it is discovered.
    I hope that they will decide why you are still suffering and then devise a plan to help you.

  • If in fact you do have a Non-union it can cause Severe pain. At least in my case it did. I had a CT and I got several opinions on that CT I finally found a Dr. Surgeon who discovered the Non-Union. Some surgeons just do not know how to read a CT they just do the cutting. Again I'm just writing my experience. I hope you do find out what is causing your on going pain, it's No Fun to be wondering what is causing your pain issues.

    Please keep us updated and I wish you find the source of your Pain!

    ACDF C4-C7 5/13/2010. Synthetic Bone Graft Failed Fusion.
    PCF C4-C7 8/13/13. Rods and Screws Fused in 3 Months with Autograft.
    C6-C7 Spineous process Surgically Shaved Off 3/11/14.
  • AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
    edited 12/05/2013 - 4:43 PM
    You can always ask for a second opinion of a CT or MRI by a neuroradiolgist. The specialize in finding nerves that are causing problems. I did not know there was even that speciality till I got refered by ortho. They were great at expaining things. This was at a teaching hospital so they are probably use to discussion and are good at talking.
    If you have a CT mylogram it is probably done by a neuroradiolgist.
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