In 1993 I had a C6-C7 ACDF. Since then I have had minor neck pain, but other symptoms of pain and numbness resolved immediately after surgery. I have had episodic problems (always on the left side) that have been resolved with PT, although MRIs have shown continual DDD and worsening spondylosis.
In late July I got sudden pain and weakness in left the left shoulder, arm, hand, and fingers. The NS advised that surgery was necessary quickly do to the severe weakness. H squeezed me in for surgery on August 14. He performed a three level posterior foraminectomy and foraminotomy at C4-C5, C5-C6, and C7-T1. They were correct when they told me that the incision area would be much more painful for the posterior surgery than the ACDF.
Immediately after surgery (and currently) the pain was lessened in my shoulder and arm (but not eliminated), the numbness was greater, and the weakness was about the same. The NS told me that my neck was a lot worse than appeared on the films, and he really had to manipulate the nerves. i don't have my post-op follow up until September 17.
For all you experts out there, when can I expect to get back the function of my wrist, hand, and fingers?