I had surgery Sept. 10, 2013, posterior approach, C3,4,5,6,7. I had spinal canal stenoses at C3-4, C4-5 and C6-7 levels due to disc bulges and arthritis. I also had foraminal stenoses at C3 on the Right and C5-6 and C6-7 bilaterally also due to arthritis. I have a spondylolisthesis of C4 on C5. I am 59 years old.. I have had symptoms of neck and shoulder pain on the Right for 5 years and back then I had a shoulder replacement surgery due to severe arthritis which alleviated the pain quite a bit for 5 years. I have had intermittent numbness in the 3,4 fingers on the R which worsened over time. I started getting weakness in my biceps and deltoid muscles which is the C5 nerve predominantly.
I had 4 opinions. 2 said fuse C3-4 and C4-5 now by anterior micro discectomy approach and then have another posterior micro surgery in the future to take care of the C7 foramen only on the R to take care of the numbness. These 2 surgeries were less invasive but I did not like the thought of 2 surgeries and not taking care of most if not all the problems.
The surgery was laminectomy at C3, laminoplasty at C4,5,6 and laminotomy at C7. I am 16 days post op. The first 12 days were painful. I had to take pain and muscle relaxers 24/7. I rested well but first thing getting up from bed was excruciating initially. I had varying symptoms probably due to all the inflammation due to cutting on 5 vertebrae and subsequent pressure on the nerves. I did get steroids for that, hard to say how much that helped, probably did. , I had to contort my whole body to get my neck in a position that was less painful, and if it moved in any direction I had severe radiating pain. Wow, and back to bed, take more meds.. I had some palsy in my right arm so difficult to eat, brush teeth, shave etc. Over this post surgical time things have improved and now I can do those things but still have some weakness and difficulty raising my right arm over my head. I think it will come back. I see the Dr. for first post op visit tomorrow. I am optimistic and see the light at the end of the tunnel. I will keep this board informed
Regards to all