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After neck fusion who wears their brace 100% faithfully

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:24 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
OK let's be honest here. every case and every surgeon is different when it comes to direction and instruction regarding cervical collars post fusion. we all know this. there is no documented proof or study done that even says wearing a cervical collar after fusion is necessary, beneficial or needed.

i personally had c1 c2 fusion twice. i was told to wear this collar for three months (6 more weeks to go). however . . . i do take it off to shower, when i get in from walks to massage my muscles and when i am watching tv.

be honest here people!! how faithful are u to your neck brace or collar??


  • I only have to wear my soft collar while driving according to my doctors instructions. I wear it most of the time,but there are times I forget to put it on before driving. When I realise I have forgotten it I am nervous until I am out of the car. I just keep thinking what if someone hits me from behind. I do try to wear it everytime I am in a car.
  • roxy roxy roxy :D

    i only had the 1 level. i was allowed to take it off when i felt at the 4wk mark. i wore it on and off. i found other says to keep my head straight.
    example pillows. i would always sleep in it I) I) I)
    but while i was up and about in the house i would have it off.
    back on while in the car with someone or going for a long trip as the MALL ;)
    it was pretty much second nature to keep my head straight.
    and pretty much to my knowledge :B that is all that the collar is used for same is with the back brace . so that you do not twist, bend unexpected :O which as we all know can cause unexpected strange feelings or pain.

    same with my NEW SHINEY ok not shiney but black back waist brace for my back. its still sitting in my bedroom. i will only use it when i know i will be sitting up , going somewhere or doing waist level housework. why wear it any other time??? :/ if i am not doing anything to warrent a injury O:) i think that is why i did not have so many issues in the shower, etc after the ACDF because he allowed me to take it off so early. :/ and i started PT at 4wks which was heaven , sore yes, but relieved to get that muscle tone back ahhhhhhhhhhhh :X :X

    hope this is what you were looking for!!!

    NOTE: This is my opinion only and nothing to do with the medical field ;) ;)
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  • I faithfully wore my collar for the six weeks. I was allowed to take it off only to shower otherwise soft collar around the house, aspen collar in the car and at night. Because I changed from soft to hard collar I think it was easier.
  • Since this was my 2nd surgery and I never want to do it again, I worse my aspen collar 24/7. Had a different one to shower in. At about 6 weeks I was able to remove it when sitting and eventually wean off of it. So yes, I was very strict about it. Didn't want to jeopardize the fusion process after having a failed fusion the first time around.
    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
  • roxy54321 said:
    OK let's be honest here. every case and every surgeon is different when it comes to direction and instruction regarding cervical collars post fusion.
    Hi Roxy,
    Somewhere on here I have a post on the subject of collar or nno collar post cervical surgery. My surgeon is one of those who do not believe in using neck collars after surgery and I had a 3 level with plates and screws so there was a lot of neck involved. I researched my doctor and was impressed with him and the practice he works in. He "claims" that he has never had a failed fusion. He also uses the bone stimulator to promote bone growth after surgery. I guestioned him on the "never seen a failed fusion" because I felt that was quite a claim. He said he has not had a failed fusion but he has had to do revisions so its not like he said that all of his surgeries were 100% successful. Anyway I am getting off topic and what I wanted to say was that my doctor says that collars cause the muscles in the neck to atropy and folks end up having to do a lot of work to regain or build neck strength after they stop using collars. Since I am only 4.5 weeks post surgery I have yet to form my own opinion on the results. Not using a collar is scary but hopefully this will all work out for me. One last thing, I have tried to find studies on the collar/no collar questions but have had no luck.
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  • i had posterior with rods screws and wire c1 c2. hurt like hell. the burning pain as everyone mentioned was brutal.

    i have been in this collar since July. my muscles are weak. very.

    my doc said 99% fusion rate. but again i had it twice too . . .lol.

    i will reassess this collar thing when i see him again on oct 31.
  • I have worn my collar 24/7 since august 26 and will wear it until dec 1, I take if off after I shower to change the pads to dry ones, (I sit still while my husband changes the pad... I have rods, plates and screws and have 3 fusions on the front and 3 on the back.. I still have a long way to go , this is my second surgery, Im not taking any chances... I hate it but Im using it...
  • hi roxy my ns had me wear a hard collar even in the shower for the first two months. at the doc visits they would change the pads :sick: for me. i think the 3 month i was allowed to shower without it =D> . i still wear a soft collar after talking to my ns about it, for car rides on bumpy roads, doing small things that would tend to have my neck move to its limits, and in my little fishing boat (not yet) on the lake. i will always follow my ns medical advice and do what i can to prevent another surgery. i wish u a speedy recovery and a prayer for u also.
  • Hi Roxy,
    I wore and wear my collar at a 100% compliance as this was the forth surgery. I have the Miami J collar and while i don't have to wear any longer in the day still sleeping with the collar. Surgeons use collars based on what the diagnosis is and the type of hardware as well as the product they are using to fuse with. In my opinion after going through the surgery the least thing i could do to insure myself a easier recovery was to comply with the surgeons orders. I furthermore have complied with all the lifting restrictions as well as the use of the meds.
  • I only had a soft-collar, but I wore it 24/7 except when in the shower. My NS said after my 1-week post-op check-up that I could shower and remove it then only, and not to turn my neck side to side when it was off.

    After my x-rays, I was informed I could lose the collar as everything was holding, and starting to fuse.

    I'm going to say it is tough sometimes to do what we are told, especially when we start feeling better. However, I did everything just as I was instructed, and I am feeling like NOTHING was ever wrong with my neck right now.

    Of course, I only had one level done, c6-c7, and a soft-collar, so who really knows what these collars really do for us.
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