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Post Surgery Burning Pain

I am 1 plus week post op from a ACDF C3-4 procedure and foraminotomy and am experiencing burning pain and stiffness on the side of the neck where the procedure took place. The pain is not so bad that I take meds unless I need to sleep or if it becomes persistent for an hour plus. My question being new to this surgery is this fairly normal? I have my post op appointment in two weeks so I am looking for people who have had like experience.



  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 6,366


    I have never had this type of surgery but it could be nerves waking up that have been compressed. Usually that is what it feels like.
    Other than that pain, how have you been feeling?

    I'm sure you will get other replies to help you out on this. In the meantime, you might find this helpful.

    Take care and keep us posting on how you are doing.

    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator
    Please read my  Medical History
  • I feel good being able to walk a mile plus each morning. Sleep is not always easy with the cervical neck brace and the burning pain sensation, but I feel blessed with the recovery so far. 

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  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 6,366

    Wow!! Walking a mile each morning and only being i week post-op, I think you are doing great!
    I can't imagine trying to sleep with a neck brace on but remember, be patient. Recovery is the mot important part of having surgery. Don't do anything you should not be doing and do what you should to help with your recovery. 
    Hopefully before long you will be back to normal.

    Keep us posted on your progress. We always stress, keep posting as it will help others going through the same thing.

    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator
    Please read my  Medical History
  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,486

    hiya!  i haven't had your surgery.....but a couple things i noticed after my surgery.

    burning feelings could be a number of things i was told.  first it could be infection, but that would be accompanied with an angry red incision and puffiness, and usually oozing of odd stuff that smells bad.  so if you aren't oozing, stinking and red and angry, it's likely not that.  the second is when they cut the skin they cut all the little nerve endings in the skin.  all of those have to heal.  and they can itch, burn, pinch, poke, feel like ants crawling under your skin....all kinds of feelings.....i found that putting ice on it would calm them down if it's nerves.  just a few minutes with the ice on would give me about 30 minutes of relief.  for me heat made it way worse, so i stuck with ice.....but i guess try them and see which works for you.  i found with the nerves healing it was about a week of the odd feelings and then i would wake up one morning and be able to feel in a patch of skin again! 

    stiffness is totally normal!  i'm 7.5 months out of a bit larger surgery than yours (i had 10 levels fused) and i'm STILL stiff in the morning and late in the evening.  a heating pad or a nice hot shower helps me....you are only a week out, so you need to have your surgeon's okay for showering-if you still have stitches or staples or whatever, you shouldn't run water over your incision!  so make sure you ask about it first.....but a heating pad will help the stiffness quite a bit.  your muscles get all shoved around...and a week out is really really early days post surgery! 

    i'm going to say something you probably don't want to hear, but "be patient!".  and honestly, i mean PATIENT.....it takes time to recover from these surgeries, and nothing you do will make it heal faster than it's going to heal.....take it slow, and follow your doctors orders, and hopefully the pain and stiffness will resolve faster than if you don't treat it right. 

    keep us posted!

    Veritas-Health Moderator
    Dec '16 T10-S2 fusion with pelvic fixation. Laminectomies L2, L3, L4, L5, facet removal, cages L4-5, L5-S1, severe scoliosis, arthritis and stenosis repair. 

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