Update 1 Year Post-Op Posterior Cervical Fusion c2-c6

A couple weeks ago I posted how little relief I've had since my surgery on 2/13/19 and how I seem to have become worse.  I saw my surgeon last week and told him all about my aches and pains.  Thank goodness he is willing to look into these issues and has ordered an MRI and CT scan to see what is going on.  He also ordered PT to help with my balance issues.  I don't know what they're looking for--possibly a buldging disc--we know that my c7 shows a lot of degeneration happening which will only get worse.  He said they didn't fuse the c7 because they like to keep a buffer between the fusion and the healthy portion.  He said if everything checks out with the images taken then he'll order a bone scan.  I just want to feel better.  Today is really bad, my left arm feels like dead weight and I have horrible pain behind my left shoulder blade. When I walk I feel like there is a "hitch" in both but more with the left.  The left side has always been affected.  My neck is in a severe amount of pain as well today.  It's amazing how I can feel so different from day to day.  If anyone has had a similar surgery without results, what, if anything did you do to fix it--if it's even fixable.




  • memerainboltmemerainbolt IndianaPosts: 4,161


    I have not had this surgery but just wanted to tell you how sorry I am that you have been in this much pain, and getting worse. I hope your surgeon can come up with an answer to give you some relief.

    Take care and please let us know how you are doing.

  • FionaFaye - I wish I had simple answers for you.  I'm fused from C2 to T10.  Three of those fusions (in cervical area) were performed surgically and the remaining fusions were auto-fusions by my body.  All of these fusions happened over many years because of severe whiplash trauma many years ago.  In my case, multiple doctor opinions ruled out arthritis and spinal stenosis. 

    I can identify with a lot of your symptoms your have written about in your multiple discussion threads over the past year.

    From my experience, try to use the services of health systems that have departments that specialize in complex spine issues.  Also, I've found value in opinions of doctors from different systems. 

    Statistically, most of us with complex spine issues will have chronic pain for the rest of our lives.  I've been advised by providers that perform services for complex spine issues to look for a blend of methods to try to obtain some quality of life.  How to obtain some quality of life?  Every case is different.  The management of one chronic pain is different for each of us. 

    A lot of us here have personal empathy.  This is a good place to share our experiences.  Please continue to update us.

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  • I'm sorry to hear of what little relief  you are getting. Let me tell  you my experience. I'm 12 weeks post ACDF C 4-5-6. I had burning in the back of my neck for @ 9 years. Did nsaids, outpatient PT over several years, burning in my left shoulder, tingling from shoulder to elbow with arm weakness. Had multiple cervical epidural injections annually. The degeneration progressed to the point of pressing on my spinal nerve. Post op the worst pain was within the first 2 weeks with painful swallowing & neck pain.  I weaned off Percocet in week 3 to Tylenol EX. At 6 weeks I was down to Tylenol as needed. Now at 12 weeks, no  pain .Just an occasional buzzing across the back of my shoulders. I've returned to work and to the gym but no lifting over 10 lbs.

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