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Upcoming C5,6,7 fusion

AZJanetAAZJanet Posts: 1
edited 01/18/2015 - 9:26 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I am having C 5,6,7 fusion in two weeks. Doctor says neck brace or 6 weeks. Is this typical? He also tells me recuperating from this surgery is "easier" than the two lumbar fusions that I have had. Would like any tips from people who have had this surgery. I'm worried about the throat pain afterwards also.


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    edited 01/18/2015 - 9:25 PM

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • I have ACDF done on C5-6 while my C6-7 was congenitally fused. So, the range of motion of mine will be similar to yours.
    If screws and titanium cage will be installed, my neurosurgeon advised that the installations are tight enough for holding intervertebral space which is supposed to be fused within a year. I wore a soft brace for only 2 nights post op. After that, I was told to move my heads side to side more often to ease the stiff muscles. Wearing braces for too long my not be good for recovery, as muscle spasm is always resulted after surgery.
    The throat pain is not that bad. It will fade away in a week or so.
    The most important thing is manage your psychological condition, Relax and stay positive. Be convinced that the pain is only short term.
    By the way, have you consulted your dr whether fusion is compulsory or artificial disc implant (a mobile joint) could be an option. For me, my neurosurgeon told that my C-spine curvature did not allow me for implantation of movable disc.
  • I also had my 2nd acdf Nov 21st 2014 on c6-c7 , my first c5-c6 was feb 2012 , however my recovery hasn't been so great. I still have pain when turning my head to the left, pain migrating into my left shoulder and down my arm. I also have a feeling almost like having a bruise in my left bicep muscle, although no bruising there :-( and have developed lumbar pain, which is excruciatingly annoying. I know its only early days or weeks in fact.

    My doctor cannot explain if this pain is being caused by my surgery. Its driving me insane :-(
  • Dear Garfybo,
    I developed lumbar pain too. I am 37, female. Not sure if lumbar pain is kind of complication when a section of spine is fused.
    Wish you speedy recovery. You are not alone.
  • Hi, it must happen to all good women then :-) but seriously after being so active when younger, gymnastics, athletics etc it doesn't bode well for later years.

    I was a passenger in a car and suffered whip lash after an accident about 16 years ago, however my consultant cannot state whether my problems have started from that.

    Take care
  • You good woman take care. Hope mild exercises and physiotherapy helps. All the best to Janet!
  • Motor1MMotor1 Pittsburgh, PaPosts: 557
    After my second c4-5 fusion surgery, I had to wear my soft collar for over 2 months. Also, I was not allowed to drive that long, too! My first surgery, they went in through the front of neck & honestly, my throat pain was worse than my neck pain? My incision was a little sore, but most of my pain was in my throat. They gave me numbing spray to use as I needed it. After about a week, it went away.
  • Tsik SeeTTsik See Posts: 2
    edited 01/19/2015 - 5:18 AM
    I had my surgery in NYC. FANTASTIC! Now I never had any pain but diagnosed with CIDP and extreme weakness on my left side. The MRI's were pretty conclusive that surgery was required and urgent. I felt I could have come home 2 hours after. Immediant positive results, I could lift my left leg with no strain, limp was gone and my gate is back to normal. Numbness in my left hand finger tips is also gone. Thumb feels a little numbness though. The Poly-Neuropathy in both feet has improved. Kudos to the Surgical and Nursing Staff.

    I was expecting so much worse, my throat is sore but no problem swallowing solids and with the exception of some stiffness just above my shoulders last night, I feel great.

    Getting to this point was difficult though. After years of different Dr's and various diagnosis. It wasn't until I saw an Infectious disease Dr. for Lymes Disease testing, who noticed I had a severe Neurological issue from just getting off the examination table. Happy Now!
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