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ACDF What to look for in a surgeon / Pre Op questions to ask

Hi all. This is my first post here. I am a 42-year-old woman. I have been diagnosed with a herniation at C5-C6 after having an MRI. For the past few months I have been through all the standard stuff.... drugs, chiropractor, acupuncture, heat, ice, massage, et cetera. I was told I had a very good chance of the disk reabsorbing. This has NOT happened, and my symptoms are getting worse. I have arm pain and tingling, my hand (thumb, pointer, and middle fingers) numb and in pain. I have a pulling sensation from my neck if I turn it. When I wake up in the morning, I cannot grab things, meaning I just cannot make my arm and hand go in that direction. I have an appointment with the spine surgeon on Friday. I am pretty positive I'm looking at ACDF surgery. It is even killing me to type this. My arm is going completely numb, and my hand and neck ache always.

My question is this: What do I need to look for in a surgeon? How many surgeries performed successfully, if he/she is board certified, what? Also, are there other pre-op questions I need to ask?

Thanks so much! I am in a very stressed and scared place.


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 13,526
    40 questions to ask your surgeon

    it starts off about back surgery, but so many questions still apply. then there is a section about cervical surgery
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences 
  • LILZA1LLILZA1 Posts: 6
    edited 07/24/2014 - 2:06 AM
    Thanks so much. I have EDIT. I am wondering if any of the surgeons are board certified. I also wonder how easy it is to change doctors if I want someone else to perform the surgery. This is a serious thing, and I want the best. Also, I am wondering if they do disc replacement. I just know that I am heading in the surgery direction, and I want to have all my facts. But this is like a steamroller. Every day it is getting worse, and I don't want to wait until it is too late and end up having an emergency situation where just anybody performs the surgery. My neck and arm and hand are KILLING me.

    Post edited to remove name of specific hospitals. by Liz The Spine-Health Moderator Team
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  • NJDanNNJDan Posts: 31
    edited 07/24/2014 - 2:06 AM
    I have Dr. EDIT too. He is one of the best in NY or NJ. You're lucky to have him

    Post edited to remove name of specific doctor. by Liz The Spine-Health Moderator Team
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