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How Common is Repeat Surgery?

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,321
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:30 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I had a cervical discectomy and fusion at c6/7 on August 12th 2008. Until last week I was amazed at the results. I woke up last Wednesday night and I could not move the thumb or forefinger on my left hand. It took about twenty minutes to regain movement, but I now have numbness in those fingers, and also some new numbness between my shoulder blades and new weakness in both arms. I went to my neurosurgeon and am scheduled for an MRI. I am scared to death and I really don't want to go through another surgery so soon. The Neurosurgeon thinks that it may be a herniation at another level. I just feel so helpless. I am trying to put on that brave front for family and friends, but I can't help but feel like the whole process is starting over again.


  • I am set for my C6-7 just like you on Tuesday. I have not even had it done and I am scared of that exact thing. When you had the surgery, did you have any additional bulges above or below the C6-7 area? i actually have a mild herniation at C5-6 and the surgeon said he is going to leave it alone, kind of scares me.
  • One study I recently read indicated the rate of adjacent level degeneration was high (70%), with about 20% needing additional surgery.

    I'm having two levels done (c5-7), but I also have a bulge and herniation in the two levels above. Doc doesn't see the need to do a four level right now, but I certainly am concerned about what the future holds...

    blu - good luck with your next steps...
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  • I had a visit with my surgeon on Thursday and after a long 2 years I am fused. I do have a bulge above the fusion and this is what the surgeon told me. Bulges above the fusion are not a problem, bulges below the fusion are what become a problem. It does make sense to me. He also told me at my age,52, there are always some small bulges in the spine area along with stenos is.

    Sharon start wih picking up some comon nerves. as you grood vased on you t

    Keep your guard up, undestandw what con fel license you have it rensted you
  • I had a mild herniation in c2/3, moderate herniation in with channel narrowing and mild cord compression in c4/5 and a severe herniation in c 6/7 which was corrected with ACDF. I have a feeling that somthing is going on with c 4/5. I am scheduled for an MRI next Tuesday and then a follow up with the Neurosurgeon on the 8th of May. I wish all of you luck with your upcoming surgery, and I am still glad that I had the surgery because relieved the nerve pain in my arms and shoulders immediately. I just don't want to do it agian.
  • until my L5/S1 re-herniated coming off the operating room table. Then all of a sudden it was we can go conservative again but if this happens the third time it will definitely be fusion. Heck, I needed the fourth for scar tissue release. I followed all his directions for a successful recovery and still ended up on the cutting board 3 extra times. I have been around this site a long time and it seems to be happening more often lately. I am not sure they are trying new things before they are ready? I don't know, but making people go through the process twice really adds to the stress level.
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  • I am curious what was done when you had the surgery to remove scar tissue? Who did the surgery and was it successful? How long after the original surgery did you have the surgery to remove scar tissue?
  • My original surgeon who had done the previous 3 surgeries went back in because the Myelogram showed a piece of something at S1. Plus I still had the pain and pulling in my hip. Eleven months after my first surgery he went back in for the fourth time and found both L5 and S1 nerve roots scarred down and immobile. He released them and cleaned up the scar tissue the best he could and it worked. Hip pain disappeared and it all moved like the other side.

    Two years after my first back surgery another surgeon released the peripheral nerves in my legs that released that gave me back the use of my toes which I had lost. I am now able to move my toes up and down and my big toe works. A Miracle happened.

    I was fortunate to have my surgeon give me a chance...he really looked for the problem and found the impinged nerves of L5 and S1 and cleaned them up. That was all he needed to do for that. Nothing was done to save my foot.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,525
    Our goal is to do everything right, so we avoid additional surgery.
    Since your doctor indicates additional herniating of disc, then what action plan has he/she given you?
    What you want to avoid is more surgery. There are many conservative treatments that can provide additional relief.
    I am not your dcotr, no amd not for any one else. All that you read here are personal experiences. The bottom line is to listen to what your doctor has told you

    You have gone through a lot and I assume that you want to do the things that were going through. These activities can only you help during your recovery and make sure youdo some of the exercises that you doctor has laid out for you.

    But in all situations, you should be in contact with your Neuro segregation. Many recent spinal problem should really help or your comp.

    Good l unshorel
    Pars from 25 or nore sessions
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,525
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