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c 4-7 fusion w/ titanium plate and screws

Started by tahoejimmy on 02/20/2017 6:38pm

Hi, 2 weeks ago I had a c4-7 ACDF with titanium plate and screws. This was after an unsuccessful c 4-6 hemi laminectomy in August in which i had an epidural hematoma complication after which caused me to be hosptalized for 2 days, was very painful, and I'm not sure if it caused any damage.I have done concrete work the past 25 years, but am on disability now.I spent years and years working through the pain, the recesstion certainly didnt help. My main goal is to not have to go through this pain anymore. The surgery has helped a little, but I am still in quite a bit of pain. Some in different places now. My legs have not gone completley numb since surgery, so that is a plus!. I believe my problems began when I was 16 and got into 2 separate car accidents , rolling my car both times. I was never really checked out good at the hospital. (DUI both times, straight to jail. Not proud of it and quite embarrased). I worked through the pain in my back and going down my arms , got so used to it as it became part of my life. Doing concrete makes your whole body ache too, so it blended in after a while. 10 years ago , i started getting episodes of my hands going paralyzed once in a while. Self employed with no insurance, I never got it checked out until Obamacare.MRI's showed the problems in my neck, and the same in my lumbar region. I know it has only been 2 weeks since my neck surgery, but I thought i would have more relief. Pain meds just take the edge off at most. My family acts like I should be all better now, and show little compassion. What at I looking at for recovery for my neck surgery, then I would like to get my lumbar issue's started on?

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4 Responses


Tahoejimmy--so sorry to hear about you ongoing pain! I had acdf surgery 2 1/2 yrs ago, and can honestly say that two weeks post-op is way too early to expect significant pain improvement!! Don't rush it, your problems took many years to develop and will take time to heal. Nerves are very slow to heal. You will see improvement each week, though. I know it's hard to wait, but unless you give your body time to recover, you'll likely be in the same situation as before. Good luck! Let us know how you're doing.


Thanks for sharing your story. We are so sorry about the years of back and neck pain you've endured.

We agree with BonnieRae, you may need to give it a bit more time after surgery to experience measurable gains in relief. Did your spine surgeon give you any indication about how long your recovery period will be?

One thing that struck us about your post was that your family expects you to be fully recovered and pain free. We hear that a lot. While some surgeries can instantly correct a problem, that most often isn't the case with spine surgery. The spine is a complex structure that takes time to heal. Support from family is so important when you have been dealing with spine pain as long as you have. We have a letter about how to support loved ones with chronic pain that we thought might be helpful for you ( How to Support a Loved One with Chronic Spine-Related Pain ).

If you start developing new pain or neurological symptoms (like weakness or numbness), we encourage you to reach out to your surgeon to make sure your recovery is going as planned. We wish you the very best of luck!


Thank you both very much for your advice, I have a post op appointment tomorrow and will discus these issue's. Thanks again!


How are you treating your pain?
I use several things all giving me about 5% relieve. I have not found one thing.
The best for me is lying flat on the floor. At first it hurts but keep it up. Use meditating concentrate on the pain. It takes 10 weeks 1.5 hrs. a day. Next I use ice. My wife says I have it on to long but I do not care it helps.
If you take you pain pills when you get pain it will not work. Take the pills 2 hours before you normally get pain. I hope this helps. I am living with pain but I have periods of little pain how short that is. About 1 hour.