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C3-C4 fusion

Back in December 2012 I was walking about a mile every night, one night I noticed cramps/pain in the backs of my legs, went in layed down and went to sleep. Next day all was fine, went for my walk that night, half way through the same pain started again. Again, went to sleep, all was fine next day. Now its my 3rd night of walking and it starts again but this time I'm about 20 yards from my door and all of a sudden my legs started picking up the way a horse does when he prances in a show.
Next day went to my primary physican who requests an MRI. Obviously its rejected by the insurance company so now my primary makes an appointment with a neurologist. Neurologist does his testing and says something is going on and requests an MRI. A day after the MRI, neurologist calls and says i need to have surgery immediately. All this time i'm getting worse, was at a point where i was uncontrollably bending over and had severe pains across the lower back. Neurosergon calls and says i have a crushed disc at C3-C4 that needs immediate surgery.

A paragraph out of the neurologists report says " Abnormal MRI of the cervical spine showing evidence of moderate to sever left neural foraminal, mild to moderate right neural foraminal and moderate central spinal cord narrowingg secondary to disc osteophyte complex and also evidence of non specific 5mm T2 hyperintensity within the left posterior aspect of the adjacent cervical spinal cord"

Not sure of the translation, on the day of the operation I ask the Dr if I will be able to walk normally after the surgery.
After surgery Dr says all went well, i should be back to normal soon.

Had 4 post op visits with the neurosurgeon, each time he would ask how I feel and each time I wouldl tell him not much better and his response went from the first visit of "its going to take a few months to heal" to the last visit "sometimes this type of surgery takes 12-15 months to heal and in some cases it never gets better !"

In the last couple days my condition is starting to get worse, now on the left hand, my pinky finger and one next to it are almost totally numb and the first and middle finger now have the pins and needle sensation and the side of left hand is also numb.
Lost almost all strength in left arm, next to impossible to button pants this morning. Just came back from an attempt to walk, did about 200 yards and thought i was going to fall over, no strength and pains in both legs.

Depression and nerve level just kicked up a few notches also, seriously thinking of seeking help on this level and wondering if prolonged stress can contribute to existing issues.

Taking 7 different types of medications for pain,spasims and muscle cramps.
Has anyone else experienced a deteriorating condition 8 monts after surgery and


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • Hi! I too had problems after my first two back surgeries and ended up getting a second opinion at a University hospital. It turned out that nothing had fused and all of my screws were loose. My neurosurgeon there did a fantastic job and I have had no trouble with my lower back since and that was three years ago. Earlier this year I made the mistake of going to a different neurosurgeon closer to home (but a different doc who did my first two surgeries) to do a five level ACDF. It too has not fused and so on the 21st of next month I am returning to my neurosurgeon at the University to fix it. It normally takes about a year to have everything fuse. If I were you, I would get a second opinion as soon as possible. I know it is discouraging but don't give up! Keep pestering your PCP to help you find a new neurosurgeon! I will add you to my prayers!
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