Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!


Quick Start Forum Video Tutorial

Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

The main site has all the formal medical articles and videos for you to research on.

ACDF surgery - getting worse

lcmcdonaldllcmcdonald Posts: 8
edited 06/28/2015 - 8:31 PM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I had ACDF surgery in my neck. Two discs were fused C5/C6 C6/C7, hardware and a cadaver bone. This was 9 months ago. My neck pain has not gone away, my numbness in my left arm to my fingers has not gone away either and now I have developed numbness in both legs from my knees to my toes. My surgeon says give it another 3 months. I feel that I should have been healed by now and 3 months is not going to make a difference and don't understand why my legs and toes are numb from my knees down.

Has anyone else experienced this?


  • LizLiz Posts: 9,745
    please take the time to read this post and refer to it when you have questions

    i am sure that you will find your time on spine-health very rewarding. this site is a powerful and integrated system that is dynamic and growing.
    here are just some of the highlights that are available as tabs on the main spine-health menu bar

    spine-health main menu tabs

    conditions detailed medical libraries of articles and videos that address almost every spinal condition.
    treatment list of treatments to the conditions identified by spine-health.
    wellness section contains articles, tips and videos to help patients after surgery and also to help people avoid surgery.
    medical articles
    pain forums these are the forums you will be using
    find a doctor this provides with a method to search for doctors in various locations.
    videos index to all spine-health videos

    as a bonus, spine-health provides these patient forums. here you can meet thousands of people who understand and can relate to your situation. you will soon become part of the spiney family[/u] who provide comfort and the advantages of a support system. you are now part of this family that is approximately 27,00 international members and growing daily.


    - it is very important to understand the forum rules to make sure all of your posts[u] do not violate any of the rules.[/u]

    - all new members must read our faq in order to understand the layout of the forums, how to navigate through the forums, helpful terms, how to make effective threads and posts, plus a link index to many of the important medical forums and key medical articles on spine-health forum faq

    i am positive any member, new or old will find this chroinc pain - step by step thread very valuable.

    here are some links that all new members need to review to create effective threads and more

    read before you post
    tips for newcomers
    understanding the rules

    all of this will help make your threads better and improve the times and quality of responses you will receive.

    you can also find spine-health on these social networks

    facebook www.facebook.com/spinehealth
    pinterest https://pinterest.com/spinehealth/boards/
    twitter https://twitter.com/spinehealth

    if you have any questions or need assistance, you can use the private message facility to[u] contact any one of the spine-health moderators



    doug hell

    also working with us very closely is allison walsh from the spine-health company



    Veritas-Health Forum Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • Motor1MMotor1 Pittsburgh, PaPosts: 606
    Has your doctor done X-rays to see if your neck fused? I was having same issues, and a new doctor discovered that my neck never fused, so I had to have another surgery.
  • advertisement
  • Yes I have had three x-rays and have not fused yet. I have another x-ray mid-September which will be the one-year mark. What other surgery did you have on top if what was done already and how do you feel now?
  • nicky74nicky74 New York,NY Posts: 76
    I had an X-ray and 2MRIs and didn't show nothing but disc bulging on the level above the fusion! I had to have a CT scan to reveal that i'm not fully fused after 2 years and "There is lucency surrounding the C5 and C7 vertebral body screws " with whatever that means...... Screws ARE LOOSE!!! Yes after 2 years and just because my condition was worsening my excellent and i mean that PM doctor wasn't satisfied with my surgeons answers HE send me to have the CT scan to learn the bitter truth!
  • Motor1MMotor1 Pittsburgh, PaPosts: 606
    My first surgery was ACDF c4/5. After it was determined that my neck didn't fuse, I had posterior surgery at c4/5. The second surgery took longer to recover from. My initial symptoms got better, but I'm still dealing with nerve pain. Plus, I just had rotator cuff surgery (after 2 years of being told there's nothing wrong with my shoulder!) I am starting to have new pains in n my neck since my shoulder surgery.
  • advertisement
  • I had a second opinion outside my normal provider and they think I may be fused but if I was, why wouldn't my neck pain and arm pain go away. He thought I have lower back issues which can be contributing to my numbness/pain from my knees to toes. He also thought that i have protrusion of two screws to the vertebrae. Not sure what this means. I had the second opinion because my surgeon said I can wait another 3 months hope for fusion or do a second surgery through back of neck add wire so I can get fusion. The second opinion surgery feels I may be fused so I have conflicting opinions but have not had a CT scan and should have one. I am worried about these screws and what that means?
  • Motor1MMotor1 Pittsburgh, PaPosts: 606
    The way it was explained to me by my second surgeon... The surgery is not done to eliminate your pain. The surgery is done to correct the issues on your spine. Some get instant pain relief & some don't.
    My first surgery was over 2 years ago, and I am still dealing with all of the pain.
  • Wondering if in either of your cases, you were given probable causes for not being fused? Did you take NSAID's after surgery, are you smokers? Or was it just a fluke you didn't fuse?
  • Motor1MMotor1 Pittsburgh, PaPosts: 606
    My first surgeon stopped refilling my pain meds at my 6 week check up. He told me I can't still be in pain. Said to take ibuprofen. I was taking them like candy.
    Now, I don't know for sure if that's why I didn't fuse? But I believe it had a lot to do with it.
    It wasn't until I was forced to find a new doctor, and he told me to stop taking them.
  • I don't smoke; 10% of all double-fusions fail. I have had an x-ray a month but still no fusion and it will be a year this month. My surgeon suggested a second surgery and go in the back of neck to get fusion or wait another 3 months and hope for fusion. A cadaver bone was used maybe that is why it its taking longer. I am now using a bone stimulator which seems to help some with the neck pain but got a second opinion and he thinks that I have some protrusion of two of my screws but I am not sure that that means? I don't think I will ever get rid of the numbness in my arm, legs or the neck pain. It is frustrating and I don't want to have another surgery if it won't help.
Sign In or Register to comment.