Ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL)

Ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL)

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2bbee
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Ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL)

My neck x-rays show "dense calcification of the posterior longitudinal ligament at C2 and C3 and possibly at C6 and c7." In addition, "severe foraminal stenosis is seen at C3-4, C4-5, and C5-6 bilaterally. My primary care doctor sent me to a neck/spine orthopedic surgeon (I don't think my primary doctor is familiar with opll). I just had my MRI done today and I go back to the orthopedic specialist. From all the readings I have done online, opll was treated by neurosurgeons. Can anyone comment on this? Also, the orthopedic surgeon prescribed traction as part of my physical therapy. I am questioning this. My pain is moderate but the numbness on my right hand seems to be steadily progressing.

PollyR
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Hello 2bbee and Welcome to

Hello 2bbee and Welcome to Spine-health!!

I dont have any words of wisdom, sorry for that, but I just wanted to stop in and say HI!!

Hope your day is wonderful!!

Aviatrix36440
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2bbee

2bbee,

Welcome to Spine Health!! You are actually listing two different "happenings" with your Posterior longitudinal ligament. Not sure you can have ossification (growth, swelling of the ligament) and calcification (hardening) at the same time. But I guess you could have both?

I had a little of that at my C5/6 (now fused..sort of) and since the disk was on the cord they had to go in to prevent paralysis. During my surgery (and he did this a little over a year later for my C6/7) he incised and removed that section of the posterior longitudinal ligament! Myself, I didn't know till after reading the surgical notes I even had it!

Further research (I do a lot of research on things they say is wrong with me!) had it not been removed, and it continued to swell, Myelopathy may have also developed! Me, I would probably be more comfy with a Neurosurgeon as he is >< close to the cord when he takes that section out. Please let us know how it goes. Sorry you're going through this.

Again, Welcome aboard!!! Smile

Brenda

PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.

2bbee
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OPLL

Hi Brenda,

Thank you for your response and sharing. My appointment for my otho/neck specialist is on December 13. Like you, I surf the net to understand more about my condition. Thank you for bringing up the difference between ossification and calcification. I will ask my doctor about this. I copied the x-ray report findings by the radiologist verbatim when I first posted. The MRI perhaps will give a more accurate prognosis. I am still trying to understand the scope of my condition.

I have changed my insurance group effective next year (my primary care doctor has left her practice). I will be under the care of another doctor and sort of a blessing (second opinion). I am also inclined to go under the care of a neurologist.

I'm sorry that you have been through a lot (your neck/spine surgeries, neuropathy...etc.). I wish you well. Again...thank you.

Barbara

Aviatrix36440
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Barbara

I did a little more digging. Do you have any Japanese decedents? I ask that as *most* who have OPLL have Asian backgrounds. Mine was only on two levels "1 each" with an unknown cause, and I know I don't have any Asian kin. My NS told me in an office visit he incises and removes the PLL when there is swelling. From what I got between that and my OR reports, I am guessing mine was due to the disk material, or spurs irritating and causing my PLL to swell at the individual levels?

If I remember right, your's runs several levels. Just curious. Calcification also runs more Asian, but has been known to occur in other races. Interesting reading! Smile I think the MRI will show better what is going on vs x-ray since it is soft tissue related.

Thanks. My spine had a lot of abuse over my career, I guess it's paying me back now! (G) Please let us know how it goes. *HUGZ*

[my edit] I just re-looked at your first post. You are getting it at one level (well more, but one level sections). It might be like I had, you have spurs or disk material causing it vs true "OPLL". Just my later thought there. Smile That could be a good thing maybe?

Brenda

PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.