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One Year Later - Still Having Issues

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:26 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hello Folks,
I had ACDF C5/6 one year ago and am still dealing with a lot of symptoms. Very tight neck muscles and a lot of pain. I've been on 15 mg MS Contin three times daily and Vicodin for breakthrough pain for about 4 months now. It seems to help. Because of a recent flare, I am back in PT. Doctor has now ordered a bone scan because he is suspecting that I have other issues including facet joint problems. My question is....how many of you out there have still been struggling with pain and limitations a year later.


  • Hi GKS. Yesterday was the anniversary of our car accident. It's been a year and I still have daily pain. I am new here, I don't have all the abbreviated dxs down but I do sympathize and hope you feel better soon. What is ACDF? I have been dxd with facet joint syndrome. Had an mri 10 dys ago and will talk to dr this friday to discuss results. The pain worsens the muscle tightening and the tight muscles worsen the pain. Its a vicious cycle. Your PT should help. Have they tried ASTYM?
  • ...since my PLIF & still have pain. Still take dilaudid & valuim daily, still need a sleeper to sleep & use my TENS & ice packs frequently.

    Just takes time. My NS said figure "2 years" until I know what I'm left with & what I'll just have to live with. Previously I had injecions, PT, etc...no more of that, NS says, just "go easy" and go w/ the flow of this long recovery.

    Everyone is different. A lot depends on what was done, what you may have had b4 & what you still have that they can't fix, etc.

    My limitations are still no BLT-ing & a life-time 10# lifting limit. Also gave up Yoga, golf, baseball, etc..anything with any torquing motions or more than normal flexion/extension positions. I too had a lot of facet-related issues, along w/ spondy, DDD & sciatica/neuropathy stuff. Some of it the PLIF helped, some of it is still there & probably always will be.

    Lots of weather-related flares & lots of stiffness in the AM's...but I walk daily, work FT again & are trying to learn to live w/ my "new" body...still wish I had the "old" one...but, hey! It could be worse! And the PLIF straighted out the spondy so my knee problems are gone!

    Hang in there! It's a zig-zag path & we don't ever know where it will eventually end up!


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  • You aren't offering me a lot of hope here. I was really thinking this pain would have been long gone by now. I was hit by a semi so I have no pain to compare to before I had my ACDF surgery in Oct. I am begging my doctor now for something, anything that will take away this pain. And I'm not talking about pain pills. I want off of them. So tell me what you guys have all tried and maybe gotten some relief from.
  • almost one year ago exactly for me.
    Being a year later , i think the improvement is as good as going to get.
    My problem is no symtoms from c6-c7 which they fused, all sytoms where on right side. Since the surgery had new symtoms on left side which left side was fine before surgery. Burning and so forth. MRI confirmed facet jounts problem at c5-c6. Been doing normal activities but always have to put up with buring in shoulder and arm. So got injection a month ago. It definitly helped but still have to watch i do not overdo it or sleep in wrong position.
    so most likely will have more surgery in future, not bad enough at this point.
  • My doc is talking about the facet joint injections as well. Will probably end up taking that step after the bone scan next week. Thanks for your comments....for the lady who had surgery in October, if you haven't tried acupuncture, it might help. It has for me.
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  • Hey tonya42, there is always hope. I think we tend to have a gallows humor most often because we are too scared to have hope and then our expectations being dashed, you know? Anyway, I have pain but I am strict about my Physical Therapy exercises, my walking regimen, and my non-hyper extension of my neck. Aromatherapy, massage (when okayed by doctor and with someone knowledgeable about cervical issues), meditation, ...Keep an open mind about alternative therapies (but don't spend tons of money on bull pucky)..and keep an open heart. There's my pollyanna optimism for you.
  • Magnesium. Plain old Epsom Salt. Just boil a pan of it and soak a towel in it. Oh Lord I hope it's this easy. We package Epsom Salt at the plant I work for so I have an over abundance of it at my disposal. If this works it sure will be worth it so I can keep all of my copays in my pocket. It's suppose to be the magnesium that acts as a muscle relaxer. And trying it certainly can't hurt!
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