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3 months post ACDF - So far so good

RatSquadRRatSquad Posts: 114
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:55 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
After 3 months of lounging at home after an ACDF C5 - C7, my Dr finally allowed me to return to work. The reason for the long absence was due to my position as a LEO. He did not want some unruly person to ruin all his hard work :)

I do however miss the unexpected bouts of loosing complete control and feeling of/in my right arm. It kept things interesting and me on my toes. (sarcasm detector alert)

I was given a bone growth stimulator and love the thing. My 90 day x-ray showed full height / width bone growth next to the hardware; and had started to move towards the back of the gap about 3 cm.

Next in store for me is to deal with a rotated L5 :( Not sure when that will happen. At least the RFA is managing the pain there for now.

I hope everyone is doing well, and wish you all a pain free day.

View my history for all the gory details.


  • HI,
    Congrats on your recovery And your use of the "sarcasm alert" - love it!!
    I'm 11 weeks post op from anterior and posterior fusion at the same levels, and doing ok...though that posterior one really kicks your butt..
    Good luck with the L5! If it's not one thing, it's another...
  • Curt,

    Just answered your PM. :)

    Welcome back my friend. So glad to see you are healing so well. Before I retired, like you I was kept out longer for the very same reasons. When I returned he still didn't clear me for "contact sports" for an additional 6 weeks! (G) Just stay safe and aware, and exactly, don't let some mope screw up his great work!

    Sucks having additional issues come up. In those shoes myself. Just work with your doctors and see what they suggest, and too of course, extra opinions don't hurt. So glad to see you are doing great, and are back with us!! *HUGZ* Stay safe my friend.

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
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  • so glad to hear that your recovery for your ACDF has been successful, and that returning to work is in sight.

    I am very interested to hear more about your rotated L5. What were your symptoms from that? How did they discover it? What are they going to do about it?

    My GP thinks that I have rotation of my thoracic spine which is causing lots of spasming and pain around my chest. I have had an x-ray of my spine, but they didn't answer her questions about rotation, they just said that my heart and lungs were of normal size!!

    I do have one shoulder higher than the other, the opposite hip higher and that leg shorter.

    I am not sure what the next step is. Because I have so many problems with my spine, I think unless I make a big noise about it, they will just leave it. At the moment I can live with the pain, but I do wonder what the future holds and if any harm can be done to leave it.

    Any information that you can give me would be great. :-)

  • I had a laminectomy (sp) and micro-discectomy from L3 - S1 in Nov 2008. Since then the disks have degenerated to the point L5 - S1 is nothing but residual disk goo.

    The rotation of L5 was discovered during my annual MRI. Since my surgery, my Dr and/or PM gets an updated MRI about once a year. The MRI showed L5 had rotated forward on the top about 5 cm from center line.

    How it was explained to me was, the disk rotating has narrowed the space between the facet(s), thereby putting pressure on the nerves (again). For right now, RFA has solved (mostly) the pain concerns.

    One of the suggestions my doc gave me for pain relief caused by the rotated vertebrae was to have a endoscopic facet rhizotomy.

    From what I understand, the procedure is similar to a RFA, except the nerves are located via endoscope along with the fluoroscope. This allows for a more precise targeting of the offending nerves. Or at least that is what I was told :)

    View my history for all the gory details.

  • Your problem sounds quite different to mine.
    I had one vertebra slipped forward on the other (spondylolisthesis) which led to my spinal fusion.

    Now, I think she is suspecting that the vertebra is actually turning round, which is causing my ribs to protrude in the front on one side, which is causing pain and we suspect this is what is causing all the spasms that I get throughout the day.

    I have had the higher shoulder, hip and shorter leg for a few years now, but no-one had said anything about rotated vertebrae before. I just thought that I was lop-sided!

    I do have degenerated discs throughout my spine.

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