I am new to the Forum, and hoping that some of you may have some good insight. When I was 22 years old I was hit from behind by a driver going about 50 mph. I ended up with herniated disks in my neck and in lower back. After 8 years of steroid therapy injected and oral, Chiropractors, many rounds of Physical therapy, pain management basically anything out there. My pain had grown so much more sever and was having a tuff time using my hands, dropping things ect. So after seeing a Nero surgeon and the determination was made that I had no more disks in c-5/6 we finally decided to take the big jump to have surgery. I had a Spinal Fusion June 2013.
After surgery I had a lot of blood loss so stayed in ICU for2 days, a room for one and was finally released to go home. I noticed a lot of voice hoarseness in my voice over the next week but the Doctor said that was to be expected since my fusion was done by entering the front of my neck. 2 Weeks later I started to have major trouble swallowing and my incision looked a bit pussy, I was also externally tired. their office still said this may happen, 3 days later I spiked a Fever of 103, could barely keep my eyes open and was in such unbelievable pain finally they said I needed to go to the Er right away.
MRI’s and lots of cultures and blood work were done to determine I had 2 infections and an abscess that was growing on the hard ware. I was told if I would have gone to bed that night instead of going to the ER that I probably would have not have survived the night the abscess was so large it was cutting of my air way.
I had another surgery to remove the abscess were awake I had to swallow my own breathing tube that was a traumatic experience all on its own. I spent 2 weeks in the hospital on IV antibiotics. Was then sent home with 6 weeks of Antibiotics. The ones I was sent home with made me violently ill and spent another week in the hospital adjusting those meds. When the 6 weeks were up the oral antibiotics did the same thing and spent 2 more 1 week stays in the hospital.
I have finally returned to work but my Infectious Disease Doctor has made it clear that unless I remove the hard ware in my neck I will have to take oral antibiotics 4 times a day for the rest of my life. Not only do they make me sick at times, but I have to be so carful who I am around. Anyone with a cold or anytime of contagious illness I must stay away from. Of course working full time in a large office that is impossible. I am also deadly afraid of becoming sick or the slightest sore through has me so paranoid taking my temperature because I have been told the abscess can always grow back..
I need some advice should I just go through another surgery and have the hard ware removed? Should I stay on Antibiotics for the rest of my life in live in this crazy fear? The Nero surgeon says take the antibiotics for a year and have an MRI every 3 months to make sure all is well only 10% of people ever have a return infection….my luck I would be that 10% Infectious deses says have it removed or take the Antibiotics the rest of your life. The Surgeon says he will remove it anytime I want but I am scared any one goes through this at all????? Words of Wisdom????