Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test


AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:19 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
:O Need some hlep, push in the right direction. I have a MAJOR herniation at the C6-7 level that I am being told by my chiro needs surgery immediately. The most recent MRI shows a herniation (of some sort) at every level except C2-3. I m VERY AFRAID of surgery, recovery. I don't know what alternatives are available to me. I can;t get the best local doctors to see me b/c of insurance issues. I am NOT sure what they can do for me that is NOT going to make me handicap (of some sort) for life. I am young, single mom & can't imagine how I am going to survive any procedure. Any thoughts, help guidance...anything is appreciated!!! I am scared!


  • But you really do not want to risk permanent nerve damage. There are plenty of positive outcomes with this type of surgery that people are able to return to normal lives. Please at least see some type of doc for a second opinion. You really do not want to risk permanent damage. I am sure that others that have had cervical surgery will be along shortly to give you some words of encouragement. Please keep us posted with your progress and good luck to you.
  • Thanks for your kindness...If I give you more details, you may see the whole picture. Crying as I am typing this. This all started the morning of my 34 birthday, something popped while I was washing my hair. I did PT, & it didn't change much. Had an MRI late in the game that said I had a herniation at C6-7 w/nerve root impingment & cord encroachment. I suffered for a few months then found chiropractic. I did great until 10/04, car accident. MRI showed improvement from the prior years, but a new herniation at 3 different levels (C3-4, C5-6, L5-S1) Lawyers wanted surgery, I opted chiropractic since it helped previously. I had improvements & some occasional pain that quite honestly learned to live with it. It wasn't as bad as some people so I lived with it. Now car accident in 2/08, new MRI shows back to stage 1. only several more complications to add in the mix. C6-7 is huge, left side nerve root impingement; C5-6 displaces & abuts cord; C4-5 (NEW) disc bulg w/thecal sac impression; C3-4 is the same. I DON'T know if I should be afraid??? I met w/guy who does decompression he says 50% chance of helping me, other dr said injections are the way to go, can't find a surgeon who will meet me & discuss options even for consult. At least not aneuro surgeon. Then there is the whole battle between orth-neuro surgeon, which is best. I have so many questions & not really sure what to base any of it on, since I don't know what kind of procedures I am candidate for. Really need direction, assistance, shoulder to cry on, someone to help me figure out what to do next.
  • Does your insurance allow or require a second opinion? My surgery was needed because of a car accident but I saw 3 surgeons before I finally agreed to schedule my surgery. Most insurance companies want you to have more then one opinion anyway, so why don't you try that route?

    It was worth the wait for me....I think my doctor is a total whack job as a person but a phenomenal surgeon (at least I think so)...and he's very careful.
  • Wish it were that easy, problem is I can't find an NS who will see me because there is an open auto claim. Health insurance won't cover it b/c there is an open auto claim. Catch is it is a pre-existing condition, aggravated & exascerbated by auto accidents. Waiting to hear back from orthopedic, altho chiro insists it should be a NS. Daytona Beach isn't the center of medical universe? Orlando Doctors are fussy over insurance. I just need some answers about my personal situation & what options are open to me. Go figure.
  • I stumbled upon this site over the weekend. They actually have hardship funds and all kinds of help. Please take a look and give them a call.


    Good luck,

  • Wanted to say that my brother was in an auto accident. He had been dealing with this for a couple years. His health insurance also didn't want to cover it and the auto insurance said it was because he had ddd..... He didn't know it-supposed pre-exhisting.... He had his neck fused in Feb of this year and his lumbar done in March. He found out the week after his surgery that he will get a nice settlement from the auto accident. He is Perm disabled now. He lost his job in October 07.

    He had to hire an attorney and sometimes didn't have money for meds let alone bills etc and now he is doing much better.

    Hang in there :)

  • Your situation seems very complicated. Is there a way that your regular health insurance could step up and pay for the surgery with a condition that if you have a settlement through the auto insurance that they get reimbursed?

    You mentioned that you had a pre-existing condition. While this is true, you were a functioning person prior to that first car accident. My opinion is that since the car accident made things worse, and they are liable for the cost, at least a percentage of it. did you have a settlement of any kind after the first auto accident?

    How is your pain level right now? You mentioned that you are apprehensive to have surgery because of the possibility of making "you a handicap (of some sort) for life". You need to speak with a NS and find out what your risks are if you continue waiting, because this could happen if your cord compression worsens. My first surgeon was an ortho with fellowship training in spine. There are many great orthosurgeons out there. I don't know if it really matters which you use, as long as he/she is very experienced and qualified to do the job. You'll want to check out his track record, training, how many procedures he has done, any med-mal suits, etc. Some people swear by using an ortho, some only recommend Neuro. Bottom line is that you need to make sure that whomever you choose knows what he is doing and will follow through with you while you recover.

    It sounds like you have an attorney working with you. He/she should be able to get you in to see someone qualified to help you. Your MRI report sounds serious, and I am not sure if waiting is in your best interest.

    Surgery is risky, but in some situations, waiting is worse than surgery. I had major complications with my first ACDF, and I was fortunate to make a good recovery. The 2nd surgery went very routinely and I am progressing great.

    I guess what you have to decide is can you continue living this way. If your pain is anything like mine was, there isn't much choice in the matter. I was not functioning at all, not able to care for my family, not able to do my job. When things get to that point, surgery may be your only answer.

    Additionally, I personally like chiropractors to an extent. But if you have significant cord compression, you need to be VERY careful about letting a chiro adjust your neck. This can be very dangerous. I am not a medical professional, so take it for what it is worth. I have just heard many stories of people who have been harmed by their chiro. A neck is not something to play around with.

    Sorry this is so wordy. (Must be 1:00 a.m. and I'm not making much sense). I just wanted to welcome you here to spine-health and I will try to answer any specific questions you have. Keep trying to find a doctor who will see you. I do think you should appeal to your health insurance to get them to cover you. Hang in there my friend. Cindy
    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
Sign In or Register to comment.