I am 25 years old and have had issues with neck/shoulder pain and numbness in various areas of my body for over 9 years.no one could figure out why until an MRI done a few years ago showed cervical spinal stenosis and disk degeneration from levels C3-7. I have been to 4 neurosurgeons and all have recommended ACDF done on at least three levels. i was also told that i was born with an abnormal curvature to my neck and a narrowed cervical spine and was at high risk of developing this issue.
I have read up on on this type of surgery and it scares me. i read that once anyone has done this type of procedure they are more likely to have to need it done again because other levels start to deteriorate. other issues that i have read that come up are non-unions (disks not fusing correctly) though the surgeons expect that i should not have an issue with this as i am a nonsmoker and have no other bone issues.
I have tried Physical therapy and have gone to a chiropractor and have had blocks and injections but nothing seems to really help with the pain. All surgeons that i spoke to believe that this is really the only option and that the longer i wait the worse my symptoms become and will be permanent.
I don't know if there is anyone out there who is close to my age and has gone through this surgery and can shed some light on what to expect? i know it makes a big difference on which levels are fused but i wanted to know about any mobility issues and post-recovery pain. I would appreciate any information anyone is willing to give!!!