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Am I unusual?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,662
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:19 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I had C5-C6-C7 anterior fusion with a plate seven weeks ago. I am a 47 year old male. The pain and numbness I was experiencing went away immediately.

The only pain meds I took were Percocet for two days, and Tylenol for about a week. I had a few sleep issues for the first two weeks, but since then I feel great.

My problem is that I feel too good. I have done some pretty long hikes, ridden my motorcycle, gone offroad in my 4x4, driven my car six hours at a stretch, and even done some mountain biking. I can't stand just sitting around.

Through the process I have been in contact with four doctors and two PT's. I have asked each one what level of activity I can perform, and I have gotten SIX different answers, ranging from I should be sitting on the couch motionless for six months to I can do anything that I feel like doing.

Does anyone have any comments on what level of activity I can be performing? What are the risks?



  • I was pretty much released at 9 weeks post ACDF (same levels you had) to do anything. The only thing is you feel much better faster than you heal so be very careful. I am five weeks post foraminotomy and I am not even allowed to walk on treadmill or ride recumbent bike. So everyone and every surgery is different :)
  • coneck

    I'd go with what the NS said as for as doing things. I was not allowed to do bouncy things like ATV till had good fusion, which was 4-5 months for me. He did not want me to risk any falling or sudden jurks till had good fusion. He said the plate would hold fusion to gether but a real good fall could mess it up. He said the longer you wait the better chance you have of not messing things up if fall or big jerk. Hikes sound good just don't do what i did and try and cross decent size creek with slippery rocks, fell hard and boy did my fusion site hurt for 10 mins or so, luckly xiray was ok. Even after he realeased me for finial visit he said do what i want but be wise on what activities you choose. He said everyone even people without surgery or problems take risks with certain activities. Since i had fusion i'm a little more suseptable to disk problems since i have a level fused. If you have to do things I'd keep it on low level till you have full clearance.
  • Wow! Coneck! Sounds like no one has to motivate you to get up and go! LOL. I'm 56 years old and pretty much the opposite of you in my levels of activity normally. I'm too sedentary. I admire your energy and 'get up and go!'

    I have a very similar surgery coming up. I've been wondering myself how long I'll have to be off work after fusions and plate being put in. I see my surgeon on Monday. My MRI's said I have stenosis, herniated discs from c3 to c7. I've been having severe left arm pain for over a year. MY right arm too but not as bad as I'm left handed.

    Ken GreyEagle
    Western Band Cherokee
  • Hi Coneck,
    I had c5-6 fusion with plate 4 years ago and experienced the same thing you did. I was ready to workout the next week! I was allowed to start lifting weights after my frist post-op appointment, which I was very happy about. I am now 2 weeks post op c6-7 and I am still hurting. I was expecting the same as last time..but not so. I am finally not taking percocet, but do take tylenol. My left arm still aches and is numb. This rupture was much worse, so I am being optomistic that I will get my strength in that arm back. I have been walking on the treadmill and hoping at next week's NS appt I will be cleared to do more.
  • Coneck,
    I am not a doctor but I think that I would ask the doctor that did the surgery what he thinks you should be doing. The risks would be having your fusion fail, and to have more surgery. I am very glad that you are doing great and wish you well in your recovery.
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