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ACDF Horrible Recovery

I ended up staying for three days in the hospital for a C5-6 ACDF, and my whole experience from start to finish was just miserable. I'll try to type up everything about it later when I maybe feel a little bit better, but I'm just sad and in so much pain at the moment. I'm also wondering how many days of medication you were sent home with? I'm so scared to use my pain meds because I was only give a few days and my surgeon's office is so strict, I'm worried I won't get any more after this. I've posted over in the general forum, but I'm just so beside myself with everything. 
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Comments

  • Sue 1965SSue 1965 United KingdomPosts: 111
    Oh dear sogjin-I was only able to tolerate paracetamol-so just took that every 6 hours for first 3 or 4 days then as and when..Things will get better-its so hard at first-I think the anasthesia has a lot to answer for-it is very easy to feel down at first-but it definitely will get better..Hang in there but really important to rest at first..
  • ArtsygalAArtsygal Kentucky Posts: 27
    Songjin,
    So sorry you are having such a bad recovery, it does take time and remember the surgical pain will get better and become a memory, so hang in there! !!
    Also don't be afraid to call your surgeon and tell them how much pain you are in. 
    My acdf was 2+ years ago c5-c7 and I went home with script for 1 month of pain pills and they were refilled on post op visits, was also given muscle relaxer for months. I had problems after my surgery and called surgeons office and for my case they called in steroids to my pharmacy to help reduce swelling.  But please don't be afraid to contact your surgeon.......they don't know how bad it is if you don't communicate it to them!
    Feel better! !!!!!!!
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  • HualaniHualani Big Ilsland HawaiiPosts: 56
    I changed my return flight  home from surgery and had an emergency appt with my Pain Practitioner to ask for 2 weeks of post op short acting pain meds. each of us are different.  Ive had multiple spine surgeries...each one is different. My ACDF was just over a week ago..Im cutting back on meds but also not getting much done yet.
    The Pain Doctor is Anesthesiologist  specialist and we have a long standing relationship, they know Im only going to see them once a month....and it requires a plane ride to happen...Do you have a pain management doctor?
  • SongJinSSongJin Arizona Posts: 245
    It really seemed like they just sent me home with far too little pain medication and combined with what happened in the hospital (that was it's own nightmare), it just seems like negligence. I just wish I had enough medication to feel comfortable and this whole horrible thing was over with. Each day seems worse, not better. 
  • SongJinSSongJin Arizona Posts: 245
    edited 03/14/2016 - 9:31 PM
    I'm so upset...it was finally Monday and my surgeon wouldn't call me back because they were stuck in some emergency surgery all day. The office wouldn't pass my case off to another doctor, and they said they can't call in narcotics over the phone, they have to be picked up as hand-written/signed scripts. If I had been taking my pain meds on schedule, I would have been out two days ago already. I've been using them sparingly so that I don't end up in a situation where i have nothing, and I just feel like this is some kind of torture I'd dream up in one of my novels. 

    I live in a different city, and I can't go home until I can find out if I can get more pain medications since they can't or won't call in any narcotics over the phone. I can't believe this is happening to me. It just keeps getting worse and worse, I wish I'd never done this. When is going to stop? Isn't it supposed to get better? Each day feels worse than the last one. 
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  • SongJinSSongJin Arizona Posts: 245
    edited 07/29/2019 - 10:37 AM

    Moderator said:
    With 100% of my spinal surgeries, and with 100% of my joint surgeries and with my Achilles reconstructive surgery, I was sent home with a 30 day supply.   That ranged from 20mg to 60mg of Oxycodone 5mg tablets
    I'm just so baffled as to why they only sent me home with enough for a few days, and since I went home on a weekend they just kept saying I had to wait till the office openend Monday to request more. Then this happens, it's Monday, and they still won't help, and I'm like near panic that this is what it's going to be like the whole time. How is this happening? I can't even sleep because I'm in so much pain, I fall asleep for a few minutes at a time and then just wake up in agony. Between that and the hard neck collar, this is pure torture. I wish I'd never had this done, and I'm just so angry at everything that's brought me to this point. I just want to go home and I'm stuck in this other city until I can hopefully get at least a few more days of pain pills. I'm only five days post-op and this is ridiculous. 

  • SongJinSSongJin Arizona Posts: 245

    Artsygal said:
    Songjin,
    So sorry you are having such a bad recovery, it does take time and remember the surgical pain will get better and become a memory, so hang in there! !!
    Also don't be afraid to call your surgeon and tell them how much pain you are in. 
    My acdf was 2+ years ago c5-c7 and I went home with script for 1 month of pain pills and they were refilled on post op visits, was also given muscle relaxer for months. I had problems after my surgery and called surgeons office and for my case they called in steroids to my pharmacy to help reduce swelling.  But please don't be afraid to contact your surgeon.......they don't know how bad it is if you don't communicate it to them!
    Feel better! !!!!!!!
    That's what's so frustrating! They brushed me off when I was discharged from the hospital, and I was brushed off today too. I'm already so upset I had to have this surgery in the first place, and the treatment I've gotten after this has just made it unbearable. It feels like this is never going to stop and I've just made such a horrible mistake that I can't take back and there's nothing I can do to make this better. 
  • HualaniHualani Big Ilsland HawaiiPosts: 56
    SongJin
    there may be a time difference as noone can instruct on time adjustment for forum and you are not listing a geo location. Ive seen members from China to USA and UK here. Each country and province or state has laws regulating controllled meds.
    You are not alone, if that helps. my NS also released from hospital on weekend without ample meds to travel home,
    If it helps I do see a variety of recovery reactions. My NS said he doesnt see pain after ACDF surgery. I know that's not accurate, seems common that the surgeons are out of touch with recovery.
    It is Tuesday in my part of the planet. Yes most places will require controlled meds to be picked up and delivered to pharmacy with ample ID to fill them.
    How are you today, and what progress are you making?
    Im having large swelling behind my left knee and will call my PCP to be sure Im not developing a clot, as the pain is impossible to go up or down any steps and this is new today.

  • SongJinSSongJin Arizona Posts: 245
    edited 07/29/2019 - 10:38 AM

    Moderator said:
    Most states in the USA will only take hand written prescriptions
    • No faxing
    • No phoning in
    • No email
    • etc
    Songlin, it looks like Arizona/New Mexico area.  I don't know about specific state rules on this.
    Yeah I'm in Arizona, and supposedly that is in fact a law regarding the scripts needing to be hand-written, although I was reading about there being possible exceptions. If I had known that, I would have had way second thoughts about doing the surgery out of town, although I thought they would have at least given me enough medication to last between re-checks. 

    The best part was, since I had to go in person to get my medication scripts today, the car we were in had a blow out of a tire, swerved all over the freeway, and almost got in another accident (I wasn't driving, of course). Then we were stranded on the highway in the middle of the desert heat for an hour waiting for some assistance, which let me tell you, in my hard sweaty cervical collar, was not fun. Now I'm in even more pain than I was before from all the car trauma. Even better was that my surgeon did give me more medication, but it's still not enough to last until my next re-check appointment. Feels like this nightmare will never end. 
  • SongJinSSongJin Arizona Posts: 245
    edited 03/16/2016 - 5:04 AM

    Hualani said:
    SongJin
    there may be a time difference as noone can instruct on time adjustment for forum and you are not listing a geo location. Ive seen members from China to USA and UK here. Each country and province or state has laws regulating controllled meds.
    You are not alone, if that helps. my NS also released from hospital on weekend without ample meds to travel home,
    If it helps I do see a variety of recovery reactions. My NS said he doesnt see pain after ACDF surgery. I know that's not accurate, seems common that the surgeons are out of touch with recovery.
    It is Tuesday in my part of the planet. Yes most places will require controlled meds to be picked up and delivered to pharmacy with ample ID to fill them.
    How are you today, and what progress are you making?
    Im having large swelling behind my left knee and will call my PCP to be sure Im not developing a clot, as the pain is impossible to go up or down any steps and this is new today.


    Oh sorry yeah I'm in Arizona, in the United States, geo-wise. Today was still really awful for me (see the above story for the problems with the car travel to even get more medication). I'm really disturbed by the new nerve pain down my left arm (though I'm told that's normal), and I'm still really bugged by the fact that I can't feel anything between my jawline and my incision. It's like a bizarre combination of numb and painful because it hurts if I press, but the skin itself itself is numb. For I think the same reason, it doesn't hurt to swallow (like the intubation pain is gone), but if I swallow hard it hurts the incision area, like the pushing down on my throat is really painful. The incision itself doesn't look infected, so I hope that's okay. 

    I've been trying to walk around as much as possible to avoid the clots issue myself--how is your swelling? I hope you don't end up with an issue like that! 
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