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recovery from c3/c4 discectomy & fusion and c6/c7 laminectomy: 6 months out

john64jjohn64 Posts: 3
edited 12/14/2014 - 11:53 AM in Recovering from Surgery
I am new to this forum having thankfully found you when searching for more detailed information about my own surgery recovery. Six months ago I had a: c3/c4 discectomy & fusion (front entry) and c6/c7 laminectomy (rear entry). My core question is: How long will it take to recover? My pain/stiffness/numbness/stinging pain/hot pain - comes and goes. I am better after the surgery (the harsh, sharp pains are gone). However the surgery as you will all be familiar with - creates new challenges (stiffness being one). Some of my questions are: Was my surgery major? Why is there a rollercoaster effect with the pain? (some days I feel the battle is over, and subsequent days I feel as if it's worse and may never return to the point where I thought I'd improved - I feel very confused when this happens) Why does the pain move from spot to spot? My neurologist did a nerve conduction test and I have no nerve damage. An MRI was done post-surgery. The stenosis in c3/c4 mostly gone. c6/c7 has a bulging disc. Any advice/insight anyone can provide would be greatly appreciated. In particular, why is the posterior forimanotomy/laminectomy chosen in some cases over a fusion? I'm concerned I may need a fusion now to follow this up. I live alone and save for the wonderful assistance of some friends after the surgery - I battle this largely alone. Thank you for any comments.


  • I had acdf 5 6 and 7 on june 2 and still have stiffness and pain from between my shoulder blades and out across my lats. I started back to work this week driving a lift truck loading trucks. Very tired tonight with spasms across the traps from over stretching. I took 1 Norco to calm things down enough to get a good nights sleep.
    on bad days I still get some twitching in the fingers of both hands.
    My Dr told me it would be over a year before I would stop feeling like I've had surgery. Our type of surgery is considered major surgery.
    ACDF 5-6&7 June 2, 2014
  • I had cervical fusion C3-C7 on 9-24-14. Surgery went fine. Eperienced frozen shoulder on right side. No neck pain except from shoulder muscles. Started PT in an attempt to free up. All of my pain is from cut muscles. I figure 6-months to a year to get back what I had prior.

    Jim Hill
    jim hill
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  • thanks for your message. I'm now wondering why I didn't have fusion at c6/c7 instead of a foraminotomy. What is norco? I'll need to go back in to a doctor I think. Have had some really good days - but inevitably have very bad days too. The yo-yo effect I find puzzling and disheartening. I am glad to hear you went back to work. Thanks again crkrbob
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