Hi! My name is Kim, and I have never really done this before...But I could REALLY use some help/advice. I have had minor back problems (upper-by my right shoulder) once a year or so for the last 6-7 years. A few days of meds & rest & I would be as good as new. In April, I lifted a small suitcase & wound up on the ground in agony. Went to urgent care as we were on vaca. The meds got me home, but the pain continued to worsen & began shooting up my neck, down my arm & my hand goes numb. Went to my orthopedist, and after an MRI, he told me I have one of the largest herniated disks (btwn c6 & c7) that he has ever seen. Did not want me in PT as he was afraid it would make it worse. I have had 2 of the epidural shots which have not helped at all. I was referred to a surgeon yesterday for a "fusion". Because I am a smoker(yeah, I should quit...), they want to use a bone graft from my hip rather than a cadavar-I am really worried, and wonder if there is something else I should try first. I live on pain meds, and am sick of that as well. Is this the right thing to do????
I should mention that my dad had the exact same surgery 3 years ago & had immediate relief-but he is 70.
I guess I just need some reassurance that this is the right path to take. My doc said it only takes 1-2 months to fully recover from this surgery. He also said he has an ENT do the opening so that there will not be vocal cord damage, etc.