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AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,000
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:30 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I'm a newbie to this forum, but I was diagnosed with degenerative disc disease in my early thirties. I had a fusion at the C5-6 level six years ago when I was 34. Recovery took a long while, but I wasn't in significant pain again until last summer when I started muscle spasms in the neck and shoulder area and pain down my left arm. An MRI shows that I have a mild protrusion at c4-5 and a moderate protrusion at c6-7. Surgeon would like to fuse the c6-7 level as epidurals and conservative treatment have failed. I'm not wild about the idea, but the pain is ruining my sleep and getting in the way of my normal, active lifestyle.


  • And a warm welcome to you. I'm pretty new here myself but i can tell you that you will get a lot of good advice from some very friendly people.
    All I can offer is that if there is any or any chance of cord compression.. dont put it off to long. I made that mistake my first time around and by the time my legs were so weak to walk on it was almost to late to allow the cord to fully heal itself. My NS was pretty umimpressed with me.
    I have a friend that just told me a little bit ago that he has found out he has a c4-c5 herination with cord compression and he is putting off the surgery. He refuses to listen to me when i tell him what i went thru after putting it off.. I would hate to see anyone else do that.
    But there are others on here that can help you far better than I can. Best of luck to you. :)
  • Welcome to Spine-Health. I have heard so many times that when you have one level fused, it puts pressure on the other levels above and below it and that surgery down the road is inevitable. I hate hearing that, but it sounds like you are a walking, talking example of that.

    I'm sure the thought of another surgery is not on your list of preferred activities.

    Again, welcome to SH. Take care and keep us updated.
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  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,361
    Welcome. Sorry you are in pain. I haven't had surgery so I can't really advise you on that. There are a lot of people here who will gladly help you out. I agree that you should not put it off if you have any compression. If all the other treatments have failed what choice do you have? I wish you luck with whatever you decide to do. Take care.

  • dilauroddilauro ConnecticutPosts: 12,271

    for a spine-health site introduction, click on :

    welcome to spine-health

    if you have any questions, feel free to contact (pm) any one of the moderators here priestess , bruce , paulgla, dilauro

    the spine-health web site offers so much more than these member forums.
    check the various tabs at the top of the spine-health page and you will find so much that is offered here.

    please remember that all information you receive from members on this forum is not
    formal medical advise. you should always consult with your doctors.

    to get back to the forums, you can always click on forum home

    please feel free to contact me at or send me a message
    you may be new here, but you do have some experience with spinal surgery. if i was to break down the three major apinal areas and their surgeries, i would rank (worst to best)
    - thoracic (avoid it like the plague)
    - lumbar (so many have good luck, some not so good)
    - cervical (seems to have a lot of success, good recovery, and those that have problems, sometimes have big problems.
    even in the past 6 years, surgical techniques have improved. its almost becoming a common procedure to do spinal surgery today.
    i started with c5/c6 and had the acdf. 4 years later, i needed to have c6/c7 done with another acdf, titanium plate and screws. i do have to say, that of all of my spinal problems, my cervical area is in the best condition. i have to do some pretty stupid things to aggravate my neck (though i have been known to do some dumb things to cause my self un-needed pain)
    as long as you and your doctors are satisfied that the conservative treatment route is exhausted, then surgery does seem like your next option. it may not be the option you are eager to do, but to get relief from pain and able to sleep again, now that is ok
  • I truly appreciate it. I am looking forward to being part of this community and posting here.
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  • Oh my, good luck to you. I am trying to avoid any more surgeries.
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