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ACDF Surgery Questions

emelbee75eemelbee75 Posts: 1
edited 08/23/2015 - 4:01 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hello! I am new to the site and hoping to get some information about recovering after ACDF surgery at C6-C7.

My main concern is returning to work. My job requires me to be on my feet for 5 straight hours a day. Very little walking around, primarily standing in the same area preparing food. I also am required to lift and carry heavy boxes between 30-50 lbs. I have read that some people on here returned to work soon after their surgeries but none of their jobs seem to be similar to mine. I am just curious how restricted your activity with lifting, etc. was after the surgery and for how long.

Thank you in advance!

Welcome to Spine-Health

One of the most important things that members can do is to provide the rest of the community with as much information about themselves as possible. It is so very difficult for anyone to respond when we do not have enough information to go on. This is not meant to indicate that you are doing anything wrong or violated any rule, we are just trying to be pro-active and get the information upfront so that people can start responding and your thread is more effective.

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You should also consult your doctor to better understand your condition and the do’s and don’t’s.

It is very important that new members (or even seasoned members) provide others with details about their condition(s). It is virtually impossible to help another member when all the details we have are

I’ve had this for years, it hurts, I cant move my shoulder – what could this be, what treatment should I get?

Diagnosing spinal problems can be very difficult. In many ways it’s like a game of clue. Especially, when the diagnostic tests come back negative – no trouble found! Then it’s up to the patient and the doctor to start digging deeper. The doctor is like a detective. They need clues to help them move along. So, you as the patient need to provide the doctor with all sorts of clues. That is like it is here. Without having information about a condition, its impossible for anyone here to try to help.

Specific comments :

Personal Opinion, not medical advice :

--- Ron DiLauro, Spine-Health System Moderator : 08/23/15 22:01est



  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,859
    I would say that my ACDF surgeries by far had the best recovery and long term success.

    I am fused C4/C5/C6/C7 with a titanium plate and screws. I have plenty of stability in my cervical area. My last surgery was in 2000 and the only real negative aspect has been my range of motion. I do have trouble going right to left. This hampers my driving, but I have compensated by using an over sized mirror.

    Some of the most iomportant things to always remember while recovering from ACDF surgery, is to

    • - Adhere to all the restrictions and limitations
      - Make sure you do the approved exercises
      - Do not over do anything
    From what you described, you are in the food industry. My son is a formally trained chef and still has a catering business. I have helped him from time to time. Probably one of the more painful situations is prepping food, cutting, dicing, etc while remaining in one spot and your head bent forward towards your station. That type of activity will still bother me today if I did it for extended periods of time. The only way around this is to take breaks. You need to give your neck a break, rest it, rest your shoulder muscles, etc. If not, your muscles can start to tighten, creating stress, which then can create more negatives.

    That is why I stress so much about taking breaks.

    As far as the lifting limits. With my lumbar surgeries, I have a 35 pound life time maximum limit. Do I lift more than that from time to time? Sure I do, but I have to be so careful on how I lift it. I dont have a real limitation on weight based on my cervical situation. The fusion has made the neck very strong., but I need to be careful on the technique I use to do any lifting.

    One of the worst occupations to return to after cervical or even lumbar surgery is desk jobs. Those that require you to sit at a workstation using a computer 4,6,8 or more hours a day. Actually, some of the physical activity you may do during your food prepping is to your advantage.

    Just do not over do anything. Play it smart
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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