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Nervous About 1/27 ADR Surgery (C6-C7)

Been through the conservative treatments (steroids, nerve blocks, PT, NSAIDs, Tylenlol), time for surgery for a herniated disc compressing a nerve according to an MRI. Numbness in my fingers has improved a bit, underarm/shoulder/elbow/wrist pain too, but movement and doing PT can bring it back at any time. I'm still doing PT, traction, etc daily as I am able. I'm sick of getting my six-year-old dressed in the AM or brushing my hair being an excruciating experience. I'm also not getting a lot of support from friends for my having surgery. It's frustrating because it's not like I want to spend a bunch of money and have general anesthesia with breathing tube. People say they are just concerned about me, but implicit is that I haven't done enough or that am rushing towards unnecessary surgery. I feel like I'm constantly having to defend my decision. The worst people to talk to are those, who claim to have had "similar symptoms" without getting an MRI, and who "cured" themselves through going to the chiropractor or the best one: "Running with better posture." I even went to the chiro to be able to say I was exploring every option (no adjustments), but he'd dig into my nerves and I'd leave in worse pain that didn't relent. So, now one week ahead of surgery, every moment I'm not in excruciating pain I start to doubt my decision and my husband looks at me with hope that everything will magically be fine. Anyway, thanks for allowing me to vent. 

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Comments

  • From what you wrote above in this thread, it sounds like you have tried the conservative treatments.  None of us like general anesthesia and breathing tubes, but those techniques have greatly improved the last several decades.  I'm speaking from experience because I've had at least 10 surgeries during the last 30 years, about half of them related to spine issues. 

    If you have been qualified for an ADR at C6/C7, I'd guess your expected outcomes success rate should be fairly high.  I had to have an ACDF at C6/C7, because at the time, an ADR was not yet approved.  You need to own the decision to have the ADR.  I'd expect you have already discussed the options with your surgeon. 

    I wish you all the best and please keep us updated.  We are all here to discuss any additional thoughts.

  • Welcome awatters1111 we’re glad you’re here!

    It's hard for someone to understand that has never had the pain you are having, but you have tried everything else without results, surgery is scary, if you weren't, I would be worried about you. I had ACDF C4-C7 surgery 2 years ago, I had basically the same symptoms as you, with a couple of more thrown in, surgery went really well, I woke up from surgery with most of my symptoms gone and have not really had any problems since.

    We also have a forum category called surgery buddies, if you would like to, create a discussion there, you will be with others having surgery in the same month.  

    While you’re waiting for a reply to your first post, please take a few moments to review the Code of Conduct and FAQ section, located under Forum Tools. There you will find important information about posting in the forum and helpful tips for new members.

    Have you visited the Neck and Back Surgery Health Center on Spine-health? It has a number of comprehensive neck and back surgery articles, including a Back and Neck Surgery OverviewHow to Prepare Psychologically for Back Surgery, and Rehabilitation After Spine Surgery. I hope you find these resources helpful.

    Again, welcome to the Veritas Health Forum.

    Chip 

    Veritas Health Forum Moderator

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  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 4,161

    Welcome awatters1111 to the forum!

    When you know your surgery date, join us in Surgery Buddies, the link is below. Just choose a month and start a discussion.
    Surgery is a decision that should be between you and your surgeon, not what other people think. I'm sorry you have had to go through this. You have come to a good place to read other member's experiences and support.

    While you’re waiting for a reply to your first post, please take a few moments to review the Code of Conduct and FAQ section, located under Forum Tools. There you will find important information about posting in the forum and helpful tips for new members.

    Have you visited the Neck and Back Surgery Health Center on Spine-health? It has a number of articles and practical tips for preparing for spine surgery. You may also want to check out the video How to Prep Your Home for Spine Surgery Recovery, which also has some really great tips.\

    Again, welcome to the Veritas Health Forum.
    Sandra
    Veritas Health Forum Moderator

  • Thanks for your support. I'm starting to feel more assured and less nervous about the procedure. My GP told me that anesthesia and surgical techniques have come a long way in the twenty years he has been out of residency. My surgeon is very knowledgeable and completed his spinal surgical training at Johns Hopkins. There is a lot of folklore out there about spinal issues. I fell like I'm in good hands. 

  • I am glad you are feeling better about your decision, I have had people tell me in the past that they would never have back or neck surgery, those people have never felt the pain you are in, some of those same people that told me that have since had surgery, I do remind them of what they said when I see them.

    Take care and keep us posted

    Chip

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  • Nearly two weeks after surgery and I'm feeling pretty good about it and pretty good in general. The anesthesia took a few days to wear off, so I was really sleepy and in bed for three days post surgery. There were more post surgery restrictions than I anticipated. Hadn't realized I'd only be able to eat pureed food for two-weeks and would have to wear compression hose for a month. I was able to go back to work after 6 days, but I work from home. The numbness is totally gone and the only pain I'm having is from the surgery. Happy I made the decision. 

  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 4,161

    awatters111

    Thank you for the update. I am so glad you are having a good recovery. Keep up the good work and hopefully you will not have any more pain.

    Take care and keep us posted on how you are doing.
    Sandra

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