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New sudden pain, after acdf

I had my acdf about 3 1/2 months ago. 2 level, C4-5, 5-6 needed 6-7 also but NS wanted to wait as it was only just starting to cause pain in my left shoulder. Since surgery I've still dealt with pain on right side neck/shoulder, that hasn't resolved even by half yet but I'm managing. MRI from 11/2014 for C6-7 says, left lateral recess focal disc bulge, mild left lateral recess stenosis, mild left neuroforaminal narrowing noted secondary to left sided uncovertabral joint hypertrophic degenerative changes. Just to give you an idea of what's going on at that level.

Anyways after a cpl hrs sleep last night I was woken by severe and I mean like a 9-10 severe pain in my left side of neck sharply into my shoulder blade. I yelled when trying to move, and was in tears. I tried laying still after changing positions but no luck, I couldn't move my head, neck or left arm without feeling this pain. I got up and put my hard brace on from acdf surgery hoping it would straighten my neck to help. It didn't help much. Got my heat pad out too. Took Tylenol and ibuprofen together as NS took me off pain meds a month and a half ago and told me combining these too have shown to relieve pain the same as the hydrocodone that I was on does. No such luck.

This pain is worse than my post op was. I'm going to call NS office on Monday to see what they want to do if anything. My neck did pop loudly yesterday when I was backing my car up. I'm thinking that C6-7 level gave way as my last xray showed very little bone growth. I've been released from all restrictions except major lifting since one week post op and I'm wondering if there was too much stress on that level. Has anyone experienced anything similar? Any advice? Its going to be a long miserable weekend for me and I'm just at a loss. My NS has been expecting a cookie cutter recovery for me and hasn't seemed too happy with my progress thus far. And I'm honestly worried I'll be told to wait it out. I have 4 kids, I can't be down for too long. Thanks in advance.
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Comments

  • I'm not a doctor, but I have read that a week prior to your surgery and after one is to avoid ibuprofen, as it interferes with the fusion and bone growth. Something to look into and ask your doctor about for you.

    I'm sorry to hear of your suffering. If your doctor isn't giving you the help you need to function I would seek out another doctor. Maybe ice can help with the pain. Perhaps at this point physical therapy may help or you may want an MRI to see if things have changed. Just some thoughts for you as a non medical expert, but someone who has a 3 level cervical fusion scheduled soon.
  • Faith981 said:
    I'm not a doctor, but I have read that a week prior to your surgery and after one is to avoid ibuprofen, as it interferes with the fusion and bone growth. Something to look into and ask your doctor about for you.

    I'm sorry to hear of your suffering. If your doctor isn't giving you the help you need to function I would seek out another doctor. Maybe ice can help with the pain. Perhaps at this point physical therapy may help or you may want an MRI to see if things have changed. Just some thoughts for you as a non medical expert, but someone who has a 3 level cervical fusion scheduled soon.
    Thank you! Yes he told me no nsaids 2 weeks prior to surgery and told me at my 1 month post op to resume them again. I was concerned about it preventing bone growth but he said it'd be fine. But most of what I research says to avoid it for awhile after a fusion. But at this point I don't have much of an option as that's one of the only options I have right now.

    I might try ice in a bit although I do better with heat than ice. They've told me my last 2 visits they would set up physical therapy and I'm still waiting on that. But with this pain there is no way I can do it right now. I'm hoping they'll do an MRI. Thank you for responding and good luck with yours! :-)
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