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Has anyone had cervical disc replacement surgery?
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Avatar_f_tn
I have ddd with radiculopathy at C5/C6, bone spurs at C1/C2 and C5/C6, osteoarthritis of the spine, herniated disks in the lumbar region, and fibromyalgia.  I have trouble walking with numbness and pain going down the legs, very little neck mobility, pain through the shoulders, neck, down the arms to the thumbs, numb arms and hands.  My neurosurgeon recommended replacing the disk at C5/C6 (the last 2 cortisone injections did not do much to help).  However he cautioned me that fibromyalgia patients often have significant problems after this surgery.

I haven't seen a rheumatologist recently but have a new appointment with one in a couple weeks to discuss.  I'm also going through a cardiac workup with a cardiologist to try to level out my bp problems.

I have problems with blood pressure spiking up due to the pain and this caused a TIA in 2010.  My blood pressure is currently high and this concerns me as stroke is a potential side effect.

Has anyone with FMS had the surgery?  What were the longer term results?

Also, I am trying to apply both for SSD benefits and an LTD policy via Prudential.  Both have told me that there is no physical proof that there is a reason for my pain - even with my non-medically trained eyes, I can see the bone spurs pressing into the spine, the radiculopathy, and the herniated disks.  Any suggestions on how to prove that the pain is debilitating?  I have narcolepsy and am taking Percoset and Skelaxin for the pain after graduating from Ultram a few months ago.  The meds make me extremely sleepy and worsen narcolepsy symptoms.  

I also am throwing up whenever I use the computer (my work is in IT) because of the bone spurs at C5/C6.

Also fighting with workers compensation as my employer position is that the bone spurs could not be caused by 18 hour days over a PC in poor ergonomic conditions.
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2018237_tn?1328465753
I am 37 and I am going in tomarrow for c5/6 and c6/7 disc replacement.  Both my parents have had this done.  Years ago. My mom c5/6 and my dad had one lower lumbar done.  Dont know which one. Both swear by the replacement.  No pain and no complications.  I am scared.  I have bad pain in left arm starting at the thumb.  I can follow the nerve by the numbness from thumb all the way to my shoulder.  I have not worked for 2 weeks due to pain.  I dont know why people are going to Europ.  My surgon said they now have very good replacement discs.  The whole operation will cost me 30k.  I have no insurence and the hospital said they gave me a 62% discount since no insurence.  I paid 7500 now and I will be on a payment program.  At least no interest.  I will repost to let you know how it went.  I wish everyone well that has posted here.  I feel your pain.  To alot of you that said they are having trouble getting a doc to relieve pain, I suggest to go to another doc.  A neurologist is what ya want.  Both parents and myself are seeing one.  I have hope because of my parents success with this.  Good luck to all and ME.  
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Avatar_f_tn
Sorry don't know much about the surgery you are having, but wanted to wish you luck!! We all here will be thinking about you.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am a 54yr. old nurse from Mpls. with severe lumbar disc. degeneration.  I, too, have been researching Stenum Hospital in Germany as a better alternative to a fusion here in the U.S.  If you have any information for me that would be helpful in my quest, please send it to me.
Thanks.
Bridget
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Avatar_m_tn
I had C6-c7 disk replacement 8 weeks. I felt immediate relief in my arm however, I am starting to feel my nerve shaking in my arm again...is this normal? I am so scared of the pain I went through before the surgery.
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Avatar_f_tn
Their website www.stenumhospital.com is very helpful, but I imagine you have already checked that out? I would start by giving Sue Hart a call. (Her number is on the website.) She was very helpful to me in answering any questions I had and helped me through the process neccessary to get things sent over there and surgery scheduled. Believe me, I had A LOT of questions about everything and so did my husband. I had never been to a foreign country before, and to go there and have surgery on my neck was especially frightening for me. She was willing to answer anything-surgery related or otherwise. She spends time in the US and also in Germany at Stenum, but I was always to get ahold of her one way or the other! That is where I would start-even if you are not sure if that is what you want to do yet. They will want your current x-rays, or better yet MRI disc report to see if the surgery is possible and they will examine these and let you know if they can help-free of charge. I had the M-6 implanted in 3 levels in my neck and have been very pleased with my results. I am actually heading to Big Sky Montana to go skiing next month-something I wasn't sure I would be able to do anymore especially if I would have had fusion done in my neck. I hope that helps you a little-please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions I can help you with at all-I can honestly say that it was an awesome experience for me all the way around, and I hope you will find the same solution for yourself. Keep us posted!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Can you tell me who did your parents surgery and who did yours? I hope everything is going well for you and your pain free.
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Avatar_m_tn
I am facing 2 c-disc removal and fusion, I heard of dr. Ritter, Is there a independent sitie to research Dr. Ritter and Stennem hospital?
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Avatar_m_tn
hi all,

I had artificial disc replacement at c-6 c-7 on 02/10/12.  I did research on the internet before the surgery and remember seeing this post.  I just stumbled accross it and thought i would sign up and leave a comment to help anyone else who is trying to make a decision.  My surgery went as planned and has helped me be able to lay down for the first time in a long time.  I am recovering day by day gaining more strength and mobility.  A neurosurgeon in St. Louis did mine using the Prestige artificial disc.  Good luck to all.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi, I just had a total disk replacement at C5/C6 and I am only 28. It has been 6 weeks post-op and I am still having pain down my arm and numbness and tingling in my right hand. The neck pain seemed to ease for the first couple of weeks after surgery, But I am a RN and since I have been back to work, all of my symptoms I had pre-op are coming back, the nagging neck pain, and shoulder pain. I am dissappointed and frustrated to say the least, so continue with therapy and wait on the surgery.
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Avatar_m_tn
I was involved in a car accident in November 2010. After visiting the hospital who said it was whip lash and it would get worse before it better, I visited my GP, as I was in agony, who sent me for an x-ray and MRI. C6-C7 was compressing my spinal cord as such I was sent to see a consultant. He advised a ADR and eventually I was operated upon in mid July 2011. 2-3 months prior to surgery I developed severe shaking in my left limbs this complimenting the pain and loss of strength. After the op I began to show signs of recovery for the first 2-3 months although the shaking which was now controlled by baclofen was still present in an underlying state.
Then I began a downward spiral my neck is painful my head feels too heavy  to support I still have a massive weakness in my lest arm. I am still off and my medication list includes tramadol, pregablin,oramorth,naproxen etc.
I have been offered facet joint injections but I think this will only stem the pain I need fixing. I am now waiting for another MRI before I decide on the direction forward. But I an sure its my neck causing all of my problems as it cracks and grinds and grates most of the time. Worst still is the fact I struggle to walk through a door way without catching it and I can not cope with people surrounding me. I am just posting this to let people who are also struggling know they are not alone.
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm scheduled for a disc fusion of 6-7 on March 12th. I had C5-6 done about 3 years ago with success, just had chiari surgery one year ago in December, and now I just blew the C6-7 and need surgery. My entire left arm has not strength and cannot use it much. In lots of pain, just waiting for surgery. I don't know why I have so many issues with my neck, but I have not had a lot of luck. I'm trying to find out why this keeps happening.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hope everything goes well for you. It seems once you have one problem another develops. Let me know how you get on.
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Avatar_f_tn
CWBoston,
  I do not know of any other sites besides the two listed below:
www.stenum-adr.com or  www.stenumhospital.com
I have looked around a little bit and know that there are other places outside of the US that also perform the procedures that may be worth checking out. There are also sites set up just for "bashing" Stenum Hospital (and other places) I found when searching. Being in the medical profession myself, I know that not everyone is the same and not every outcome will be perfect or predictable. One of the people from the US that was in Stenum when I was in there (we have somewhat kept in touch) had problems later and went somewhere in Italy I believe to have more surgery done and he seems to fine now. That being said, there were numerous upon numerous success stories that have come out of Stenum also. I guess the botom line is to do your research and choose what you feel is best and pray for the best outcome possible. That is what seems to have worked for me, and I feel very blessed with where I am at right now! I wish you all the best with whatever your decision may be! :0)
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329165_tn?1385201516
Hi there,

I had Neck-fusion/stabalization of C5,6,7 done on 2 May 2011.  I lived in South Africa at that stage (had to go for op before I could get Visa-doc to approve Visa to Australia!).

I had a lot of pain in my right arm, hand and my neck was always in spasm and had Physio for about 7 years, then I went to see Visa doc who sent me for a MRI and I went to a Orthopaedic Surgeon and he referred me to a Neuro Surgeon.  Both of them were involved in my operation.

I now have 2 titanium disks.

My point is:  A normal Orthopaedic Surgeon and Neoro Surgeon can help you with this operation.  Should be able to find one close to you, in a normal Private Hospital or even good State Hospitals/Teaching Hospitals for those without private Insurance.

With modern technology this operation is not so risky anymore and has a very high success rate.

I wish you all the best,
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2050068_tn?1330284639
IN 2010 I HAD A DISCOCTOMY AT C4 WITH A FUSION. I WAS REAR ENDED IN 06 AT THE AGE OF 36. AS A RESULT TO THE ACCIDENT AND THE CARLESSNES OF MY PAST DR'S, DONT EVER GET A PROCEDURE THATS CALLED RADIOFREQUENCY. GET A SECOND, POSSIBLY A THIRD. BECAUSE OF THAT PROCEDURE I NOW HAVE RSD. TO LOOK IT UP JUST GOOGLE RSD. SCARRY. EVERYDAY IS A BLESSING TO PUT THE RSD BACK INTO REMISSION. I SUFFERED FOR 4 YRS MANY MRI'S THAT DIDNT SHOW THE SPINAL CORD DAMAGE I NOW HAVE. THANK YOU DR.SLAUGHTER... I NOW HAVE DDD IN EVREY LEVEL (CERVICAL,LUMBAR AND THORASIC)  BLOWN OUT DISK'S AND GOOD GOD SO MUCH MORE PRIOR TO THE ACCIDENT MY HEALTH WAS MY #1 GOAL.TODAY ITS A PRIORITY.  IM STILL STRUGLING AND UNABLE TO GET ANY RELEIF FOR THE NERVE PAIN ASSOCIATED WITH THE DMG TO S.CORD AND THE RSD. ANY SUGESTIONS?
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Avatar_m_tn
he should try epidural steriod injections not facet not trigger point BUT EPIDURAL STERIOD INJECTIONS sometimes it takes two or three shots IT  TAKES OUT THE INFLAMMATION CAUSING PAIN im a suffer as well have had 3 neck surgerys and two back
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Avatar_m_tn
i had a two level disc surgery c5/6c6/7 on the very same day.i have not had any relief from the neck pain headaches and stiffness as a matter of fact ever since the procedure i have new symptoms my right arm feels fatigued and weak. i just recently went for MRI & CAT scan and was told it looked good.So yes i know exactly what your saying and im just as frustrated as you.              Where did you have your surgery and how are you feeling now?
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Avatar_m_tn
i had a two level disc surgery c5/6c6/7 on the very same day.i have not had any relief from the neck pain headaches and stiffness as a matter of fact ever since the procedure i have new symptoms my right arm feels fatigued and weak. i just recently went for MRI & CAT scan and was told it looked good.So yes i know exactly what your saying and im just as frustrated as you.              Where did you have your surgery and how are you feeling now?
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Avatar_m_tn
well how did it go and how are you feeling?
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Avatar_m_tn
What was the name of the surgeon who did your operation in St. Louis?
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Avatar_m_tn
Dr. Youkilis
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Avatar_m_tn
Beth-
where did your husband go for surgery?
Dr name if possible as well.

I need two adjacent disks replaced and work comp will not pay - so I am going at it with my own insurance then fight w/c at later date
thanks
Todd
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Avatar_m_tn
I've had two surgeries one in '04' for c5 c6 and one in '10' for c6 c7...i'm heading in for c3 c4 in 2 months so that's now number three in 9 years and all are fusions.... I've got to say this:... I've not had any successful surgery do to my injury in '03'...each time i go for surgery..it gets worse...but the problem is...once you take a disc out...the pressure from the top to bottom of that missing disc has to go somewhere... that's why all of us here are still having problems...if there is anyone about to go thru any of the procedures mentioned here.....DON'T DO IT...you will END UP as the same of us here writing....
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Avatar_m_tn
Had the surgery done in 1990, C5/C6 C6/C7 by Dr. Laws. Saw many neurosurgeons. I have done a lot of swimming and biking since. Many surgery patients head to the pool and some think it helps. Do only low impact exercise i.e. no jogging even if you feel you can.

Have survived multiple auto accidents since but try to stay healthy.
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Avatar_f_tn
I agree with Mike Don't do it.  Had my neck fused in Sept 2010 and the nuerosurgeon tells me there is nothing wrong.  I only spent 20 hours in hospital and still have major headaches, and cannot do things I was told I would be able to do.  I see a pain therapist for triggerpoints and will not let her inject them again.  My surgeon was(I no longer see him) adamant that I was having no problems.  Now I have no job as I cannot do what I was doing prior to surgery.  I agree DONT DO THE SURGERY WAIT as long as you can.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello Joe-In Jan/12 -I had disc replacement sx between C5-C6 and C6-C7 in Canada using the Pro Disc.  Hospital stay for me was one day. I had nerve impairment in several areas and my spinal cord was being pinched in several areas prior to sx. This had been going on for several years.  

As of today (March/12) my heal time is following the norm.  My nerve impairment is gone and numbing prior to sx has waned considerably, but not all sensations have come back as yet, but I am noticing daily a slow upsweep in sensations in areas that were previously without due to the nerve pinching.
I was forewarned that shoulder discomfort could last several months and that the headaches would last up to six months (my h/aches have not proven to be severe). I utilized physio, IMS (type of accupuncture) treatments, Tai Chi and exercise heavily prior to sx and as of Mar/12, I am beginning physio again only because of the physical change of the chronic what was to the physical newness, is causing a bit of muscle tension and my body is needing a bit of help for the new physical adjustment.  The pre-sx chronic pain has dissipated to an intermittent discomfort.

As with any type of sx, there is absolutely no guarantee.  Am I back to perfect, no.  Is it better than what was, absolutely.  I did a lot of research prior to sx and knew I could have either disc implants or fusion.  I chose disc implants for  personal reasons.

I am going back to work in one week.   Enjoy your day.

Chyrol from British Columbia  
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Avatar_f_tn
I had disc replacement surgery @c6-7 at the end of 2010 and it worked immediately. I'd had a prior fusion @ c4-5 in 1999 and the difference in recovery and mobility after the replacement was profoundly less painful and immediate relief was evident, similar to having a very painful tooth pulled. I had this done in Jacksonville Fl @ Memorial Hospital by Dr. Bahrami.This was only the third time he had done this procedure. I have had no further issues with the area since, a major improvement over the previous fusion. I highly suggest this approach to resolving your problem.
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Avatar_f_tn
Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Blue Cross paid for the one in CO or Germany?
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Avatar_f_tn
Do you know if anyone who had a fusion who went back to this hospital to have it taken out and this operation performed? I had a fusion and I wish I had done what you did. I was very active sports wise and now not able..very depressed.
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Avatar_f_tn
If you are denied and then need to appeal GET A LAWYER!!!! I went through the exact same thing with Aetna. I was not aware that I needed an attorney so I sent in the "appeal" on my own, thinking how can they deny me. Well they did. ANd since I had sent in the appeal they said no again. Then when I was told I needed an attorney he said you should have called me before, there is little I can do now. NIGHTMARE!! Out of work, lost large income and after STD they denied LTD. Get LAWYER right away!!
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Avatar_f_tn
Yes the fusions "work" but if there is an operation done in Germany that allows you to keep your flexibility ( which I miss terrribly) we should be able to have it in the USA!!! It's a crime.
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Avatar_f_tn
Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
Miracle...
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Avatar_f_tn
Steriods never worked for me, even after 3 times. Many people have posted about the pain after cervical fusions. Though there are many causes and I see the doctors agree, muscle spasms, joint irritation above and below the fusion etc...
I have had terrible chronic pain from 2007 until 3 days ago. I tried ever imaginable way to get rid of it from massage, acupuncture, cupping, therapy massage, pain pills ( strong doses) steroid injection, Botox...the list goes on and on. But a few days ago my sister told me about an herb that Dr Oz talked about ( I know Dr Oz???, I was skeptical too) I tried it and the first ONE I took relieved the terrible tension in the muscles in my head, neck and shoulders by 80%. Now just days after I am 95% better. I still have some joint discomfort but the inflammation causing the horrible soreness it almost gone. Hopefully I will be able to find something that helps that so I can return to work. But please try this herb it was a miracle for me!!! ZYFLAMEND by NewChapter. I am NOT getting anything for writing this. I was so disappointed when I came on line to find help but found only others suffering like me. Just give it a try!!!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi,
I am a 52 year old female and I am also considering a 3 level ADR.  I have been researching Dr. Ritter-Lang and have sent my MRI and X-rays to him and I am currently waiting to hear back from him.  My biggest fear is getting after care once I am back home, in CA.  Everything I hear and read indicates how US doctors won't touch you once you have gone abroad for surgery,was this your expierince?  Did you have to have physical therapy once you were back home?  And if so, who did you go to to get this prescribed?
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Avatar_f_tn
I do not know anyone personally who has had their fusion "undone" and had an artificial disc put in, but that does not mean it isn't possible-it never hurts to ask! I would check with someone at Stenum in Germany (or wherever else you may have found that performs this procedure). The movement that could be regained would definitely be worth it!
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Avatar_f_tn
Yes-I am sad to say that my neurologists here in the US did not want to see me after the surgery since it was not performed by them here. I went to my primary care physician (with all of my orders that were sent back here with me from Stenum Hospital) and she was able to prescribe comparable meds that they had sent me orders for and also set me up for physical therapy. (My physical therapist was quite amazed by the surgery and the movement I had in my neck, and all I really needed to work on was strengthening exercises.) I am very thankful that I have not had to seek help for anything regarding my neck since my surgery which was almost 3 years ago now. I pray that that continues to be the case, but I was able to find an orthopedic doc willing to take an X-ray for me for follow up (I think it was @ 1 year?) later on who was also very impressed by the ADRs. He was/is also willing to be available to me should a need arise. I truly believe that there are many doctors here that would love to be able to do the procedure, but sadly, it is not in their hands. Good Luck to you-and Please keep us all posted!!
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Avatar_m_tn
do they do this in bris
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Avatar_m_tn
do they do this in bris
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Avatar_f_tn
I am sorry but I am not sure what you are asking?
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Avatar_f_tn
Hope you are now fully recovered.  I too have what seems like an identical issue and advised so far to have the Cervical Disc Decompression on same discs but now going for a second opinion down in Southampton at the end of the month.
Good luck in Australia
From an ex South African
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Avatar_n_tn
hi ,my name id todd,wondering where you had the surgery and what other coditionds did you have ? were your foramina cleaned out and bone spurs taken care of? please e-mail me for i am going to clavel april 22nd 2012
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Avatar_m_tn
this is a general reply and question. i recently need to make a decision about neck surgery. so i just started researching options and notice this column. many of these examples are about fusions posted in 2010. i do not understand why disc replacement isnt more known and available now. i talked to a surgeon in st. louis and seems like that is the only way to go and confirms all the bad side effects from fusion. did i just happen to find such a rare surgeon? or maybe most surgeons too old/lazy to learn new ways. i am hoping not to be a ginny pig on a new procedure either.
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Avatar_m_tn
Where did you find this herb? i must have missed this...I am looking into disc replacement for my neck...any thoughts on where to go in the states...I am in virginia

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Avatar_f_tn
Why did you Go to a Foreign Country To have this Done When they are Doing it here?? I am have multiple discs replaced, by the Doctor that pioneered the procedure here in the US??
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Avatar_f_tn
There wasn't anywhere in the US that would do a 3 level replacement (I was told) when I needed mine taken care of. They would only do one level and the level above and below that level had to be in good condition. It may have been possible to get in to a "study" in a research facility, but I did not have the time to wait for that. Where did you have your surgery done and what kind of implants did you have?
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Avatar_f_tn
Has anyone had muscle spasms ,its been ten days sense I my anterior cervical diskectemy & fusion done c5  c6.  follow up w/ my neurosurgery Friday. was doin ok until the muscle spasm  started up .havent stop yet.. its unbearable..
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Avatar_m_tn
I had the same done for my neck in April of 2010 and was good for a few months, but the pain never really completely went away. Now it is worse or at least as bad as it was when it was at it's worse. It is difficult to make it through each day. the pain radiating from my neck and up through my head and arms has been unbearable lately. I take Ultracet, 2 tablets every 6 hours and it it still unbearable. I am terrified because I know I can not live like this. My work and quality of life is suffering a great deal lately. I am 51 but I never thought I would be feeling this bad this early. I have an appointment on the 22nd of May and I just pray there is something they can do that is not invasive. I am afraid of another surgery. I am still paying on the last. And feel very much taken advantage of, as it seems the statistics are not good for any type of spinal surgery.
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Avatar_m_tn
I had a TDR on L4L5 here in U.S. at Christiana care newark Delaware, and it was very successful. The surgery was done on the 23rd of Nov 2011 and as am writing this, i have not taking any pain medication for the past 2 weeks and doing very well, thanks to almighty God and to the doctor (Ali Kalamchi). People do not need to go to Germany any more there are doctors here who are very good! I wish everyone well.
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That is GREAT news-and I am glad you are doing so well! Do you know if this doctor/facility will replace more than one level and if they also do cervical disc replacements? Back when I had mine done, there wasn't anyone in the US that would do multi-level disc replacements. Also-what kind of ADR did you have put it? (Just wondering if they are using the M-6 here now?)
Thanks!
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I had 2 discs replaced on April 26, of this year at the hospital in Lumberton, NC.   Went in Thursday for the surgery and was home around 1ish on Friday.   I believe they replaced C5-C6, and C6-C7.  One of the discs was completely compressed, had bone spurs which were pushing on my spine, which was causing pain, burning, and numbness in my right arm and shoulder area.   The other one was starting to do the same, so the doctor fixed it at the same time.   Put in a plastic disc and had enough bone from the spurs to fix the other one.  It will be 5 weeks this Thursday.  When I woke up from the surgery, the pain was gone from my shoulder,  arm, etc.  The worst part of the surgery, was the pain in my throat after the procedure where they move everything to one side so they can get to the spinal column.   The only problem I have now is some discomfort in my shoulders at the end of the day.  Have to wear a soft collar during the day, a hard collar when riding in a car, and a bone stimulater for 4 hours every day for 6 months because I have osteopenia.   Would do it again.  
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Hi everyone,

I just had a c6..c7 disc replacement and foraminotomy at Stanford (CA, USA) using a Synthes ProDisc-C.  I am beyond thankful that such a solution exists and that my insurance (UHC) approved it -- I did not think they would.

I am now 1 month post-op.

Ok, because I am a blabbermouth, I'm going to go into full detail:

To anyone scared of this procedure or general surgery in general, I urgently recommend it. If your spine is compressed and you have symptoms plus MRI confirmation and your NS says so, you need to do it ASAP to prevent further damage.  I hope I did mine soon enough.

I was scared out of my mind!!  But the procedure, as experienced by me, was no big deal. You go into a anesthesia prep room that looks like an Apollo or Space Shuttle astronaut suit-up room: many stations with patients getting IV put in, 12-leads and cuffs and pulse ox sensors taped on, nurses and techs fussing around, and many questions asked. Good-humored anesthesiologist comes over and sneaks a mild sedative in your IV, nothing drastic. A few minutes later you're a bit more relaxed and you're wheeled into the OR. One breath of sweet-smelling O2 from a face mask, two ... and you're in Recovery.

I had no pain and was out of the hospital in after 1 overnight stay. I will say, however, that that overnight stay was a constant torture of constant peeing. They fill you up with IV to check kidney function.

Ok, so here's the story:  about 2 years ago I started getting pins and needles tingling in my wrists and fingers using a mouse.  Saw a PCP after about a month of that.  He thought I had a pinched nerve, which was true, but also didn't like the length of time and referred me to a NS and an MRI.  Moderate to severe stenosis at c6/7, some mild stenosis at c4/5, and just a congenitally narrow spinal canal in general.  After a few weeks the symptoms got better and the NS didn't want to do surgery at that time.  There was no difficulty in walking and in fact I ran 4 miles every day.

Sometimes my fingers would twitch a little bit.  And "internal" leg/bicep tremors. I feared I had Parkinson's but was reassured another symptoms were absent.  Also, this tremor was (and still is) faster (9-12Hz) than what I am told is PD.

A year later, symptoms flared up again for a few weeks, only to subside again.  The NS ordered an electromyelogram; negative.  Still no surgery necessary.  No symptoms by that time, no MRI.

About 6 months after that, symptoms came on again, but this time there was no mistaking: bilateral mild pain down both arms to fingers and mild numbness --- BUT ALSO (and being hyper-vigilant about the possibility) !!! some difficulty in walking, especially being in close proximity standing in crowded places!  Trembling and weakness in legs. Yet I could still run!  Scary.  Could this be it?  It took me about a week to convince myself it was real (onset was quick yet very insidious) and scheduled an appointment.

MRI a week later, decision for surgery a day later, surgery 4 weeks later.  I wish it could have been sooner.

Post-op 1 month now, the arm pain is completely gone, but I still have s feeling of weakness in my legs, and a bilateral burning feeling on the fronts of my thighs.  But I think it is getting better, because that rubbery feeling when standing in line in a very crowded cafeteria is better.

I am walking 2-4 miles/day but this is frustrating because it makes me sore and tired (I am used to running 4-5 miles!) maybe from the spinal cord damage (?) and still somewhat from the surgery itself.

What's crazy is that I seemed to have more stamina and less leg pain a week after surgery!  Or maybe just my imagination.  Things ARE improving, but s l o w l y.

I still feel a lump in my throat a couple of times a day; getting better.  No hoarseness.  No trouble swallowing.

My problems have largely been psychological because I want to be my old self again and I was (still am) very much scared of losing my ability to walk and run, and the depression and anxiety cause me to not pursue hobbies so much.  OTOH, work has been OK and supportive, and though I'm single, I'm blessed with great friends and parents.  I haven't been easy to put up with, I'll be the first to admit.

I am told by my NS that I need to be patient ... The spinal cord heals at a much slower pace than the peripheral nerves.  Months, 6 months, even 2 years.

Long story, huh.  Well I wanted to lay it all out.  I will try my best to stay positive (a challenge for me).  Thanks everyone for your stories and encouraging words and hang in there, I know it's hard.

Ben K (male, 45)
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I was referred to an orthopedic surgeon for my whiplash neck pain.  Based on my MRI and my non-responsiveness to one selective nerve root bock, he has concluded that I need surgery to remove my torn disc at C5/6 and fuse the bones.  This sounds like a bad idea to me.  I live with daily nagging neck pain that radiates into the shoulder and sometimes the arm, but only recently did I discover that my injury was not just soft tissue but involved a disc.  Now that I know that, I can do more to help myself, such as avoiding heavy lifting (I helped my husband move furniture last month!!) and taking Advil and using heat and cold.  Maybe I should try PT some more, as well.  I am petrified of surgery, as the outcome is so iffy.  I appreciate any comments that any one might have  fror me.  I am 57, and I do a lot of computer work.
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What DR in STL did your surgery??? I am looking into getting a disc replaced!! I had discectomy surgey 5/1/2012 on L4-5 for a very large herniation 10mm, was doing well and now am havung pain again had MRI done and have reherniated in the same spot. Will have to have surgery again but looking into other options!
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i had a whiplash from a car accident in 2006. I went for physio for 2 months found it worthless so i decided to close my case with the insurance. I was more like fatigued and soreness all over my body. I kept on working full-time and forgot about the accident. in july of 2007 i was let go from my work and at that point i had started getting nerve pinches along with numbness in my back and neck stiffness. since 2007 i didint return back to work. so I started getting shooting pains around my neck in 2008 and it became hard for me to even sleep. i kept on complaining about my pains to my doctor cus i wasnt able to do much at home or outside but my doctor would brush me off and tell me to get up and work out and i will be fine. ( apparently she had lost my record from the month i had my accident) so 2010 i was pretty much paralyzed. I had inflamation (inflammation) and spasms all over my body. neck & back went completely stiff and numb. burning numbness stiffness wobbly feel/instability in my neck and chest. shoulders and chest area was always sore/ inflamed.other things related were throat bacterial infection, blurry vision, knots in my head neck and shoulders, left arm and leg numbness.finger stiffness and nerve problems with wrist and elbow,hot cold flashes, ringing in ears, jaw locking, facial muscle numbness/weird sensation. vaginal numbers, no bladder control. nerve pinches, needle stabbing around neck. nose bleed (not sure if its related) . palm soreness. internal organs inflamation (inflammation)(not being able to breath cough or sneeze, or even lie down or sit) . muscle weakness to the extreme that i could hardly sit for 5 min in pain and then lie down on the floor. couldnt sleep cus of the inflamed body. neck or shoulders couldnt be turned to relax. couldnt recline forward or back... body was extremely stiff. knee pain, heel muscle weakness. ankle muscle pains.  i couldnt talk on the phone cus of neck pains and stress. couldnt wash my face cus my neck would feel like it will come off. couldnt take a shower or blow dry my hair. had my arm dislocation or maybe muscle tear but it felt like it was more of my arm dislocationg. couldnt cross my legs( body would lock up) anxiety ... i was pretty much dead.
all my doctors could say was .. u need anti depressants. my mri ultrasounds or xrays all came out negative. so according to them i was either bluffing or i was mental. i was put on celebrex, arthotec, ciprelex, cymbolta, and god knows which other ones. nothing worked on me. i had been suffering for past 3 yrs with extreme pains. i just started to feel better. i still cant work but atleast all of my burnings, inflammation is gone. if i was at 10 before .. now i am probably at 2 or 3 max. ( in digital motion xray - my c2 and c3 ligaments show damage)
what worked for me? consistent acupuncture, aquafit/swimming, chiropractor, massages and most of all faith in God. If I didnt have faith I couldve even killed myself to be relieved from that extreme pain which was not going away for years. If I am alive then there is a reason for it. and I cant hurt my body cus its a gift from God and I have no right over it but to either make it healthier or better. Thank God I am wayyy better now. my suffering is about to pay off and hopefully i should be all well within the next years time and back at work. so please dont give up and if u suffer from pains think of the brighter side that you have a hope. there are others out there that dont even have a hope cus they have lost those body parts which you still are able to work on and be cured. dont listen to doctors cus they told me i will never recover and i would have to manage myself with pains. this world is of a short  period for us all. stress will only make things worse for us. think of the things that make u happy even if u r in pain. try to take yourself out of this world picture and look at it from the space as a ball with billions of tiny living individuals whos stresses are even much tinier than them :) is it worth to stress over things in the bigger picture? i hope i am making some sense and not sounding like a fool here. hehe but thats the way i relieve my stresses when i bring myself out and put my stresses aside. I pray for you all in pain. just take it easy and one day you will be all fine and please dont stress as life is too short and think of the positive side that you WILL recover even if doctors tell u the opposite. :) best wishes
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How long after surgery did you go back to work?
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I have had similar problems at C5/C6. Was in a bad mountain bike accident and smashed my face and herniated a disc. Got worse and worse, almost lost all use of my left arm. Injections didn't even touch the nerve pain and issues. Finally I found a hospital that did ADR (Artificial Disc Replacement) and with the latest motion retaining technology. Now... less than a year after surgery I am back to 100% of who I used to be! No kidding.

I can give you more info on where to go if you are interested.

Kelli
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shrooms, hello
my name is steve i had the same exack leveles you are having done c5-6 and c--6-7 i did allot of research my surgery was a little after yours just had it 6-7 weeks ago and am doing well still have some pain in the low neck shoulder area but my hand fingers and left arm were completley numb an that is gone only have a little in my arm sometimes but not allot and the weakness in my left arm is gone wow i am very pleased at this point.,

now i have my back to worry about my feet and toes are completley numb on both sides but i have a great surgeon here in fl i love him and he will get my back right im sure. so how are you feeling 6 plus months after your surgery i hope you are doing well, my email is ***.*** would love to hear from you wish you the best stevie
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I had 7 discs replaced with sterilized kadaveor discs starting at the base of my skull and going down in July of 2012.  Titanium helps keep it all stable and there is some fusing.   Mine was done by Dr. Mindea at Stanford in Ca.  This is a relatively new procedure I'm told.  From the time I woke up I had full range of motion with my neck, even with swelling.  Within 48 hours I had severe shoulder spasms, however they were quick to administer muscle relaxants that took the pain away.   I'm now 2 months post-op, have regained almost all feeling back to hands, partial feeling back to feet, walking much better, sleep better, and after about 2 weeks of pain meds no longer had a need for them.  Shoulder spasms come and go with less frequency, and are managed with a heating pad.  Never even had a neck brace!   Stanford is such a positive hospital and staff!  Highly recommend for any spinal problems.
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Hi,  I'm also in St. Louis and am considering a C6-C7 disc replacement.  How are you feeling post surgery?  Would you recommend the disc replacement? Would you recommend your surgeon?

Thank you.  
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I I take no comfort discovering first, that my symptoms are seemingly the same as so many others, and that post surgery, so many issues might  continue to exist? To date, I'm near useless from the pain
The pain radiates up from my shoulders to what usually becomes a migraine headache.
Like so many, I need to reclaim my life. and put an end to the stress I  cause on those close to me.
Facet injections. cervical epidurals, narcotic pain meds have  been ineffective , just a a waste.
Surgery (disc replacement) remains months away and each week symptoms worsen and my left side reflexes have gone from weak to nonexistent.  My "issues" have presented  to doctors now for 10 months.
How can doctors allow this?  My PCP  claims that each passing month likens my chance of paralyzation.
Understandably, with conflicting test results it's obvious that it would be unwise to enter surgery.  Still, how could it be that the doctors  remain so unmotivated?
How can they allow me to remain in debilitating pain?  My life is in ruin, and I'm running out of coping skills.  Between the pain and  loss of  any quality of life I ask again...how could they allow this, and what am I to do???
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I had a cervical disc replacement c5/c6 in 2009 after suffering for about a year with neck pain, tingling down the arms, etc.  I had it done in dc by Dr John Starr.  The surgery was successful and about a year post-op, my pain went from a 9/10 daily to a 4 or 5 daily.  I got off all meds except an occasional ibuprofen.  I did have flare-ups every couple of months, but they were spacing further and further apart.  In Sept 2010, I was rear-ended and since then, my neck pain has been back.  The docs say the disc hasn't moved but it is hard to determine because MRI doesn't show anything.  I am about to get botox injections which might relieve the pain.  Good luck!
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I had a C/5 C/6 fusion.  No one told me at the time that the disc around the surgery will become herniated over a period of 10-13 years and you have to have the surgery again.  It has been exactly 10 years and since then the pain has increased (no relief), I became chronically fatigued and I was diagnosed with fibro as well.  All this stemmed from the surgery.  I was fortunate to find the Fibro and Fatigue Centers - that helped me make it through. The Centers have since then been renamed "Chronicity". There is a magazine called Fibro Aware that addressed workman's comp issues involving people like us.  It was like I went to sleep during surgery and didn't wake up for 7 years.  I will not have the surgery again and am looking into artificial disc replacement instead of fusion!  
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I am 51 years old. I was in a car accident in 1989 that pulled every muscle in my neck. In later years, I had severe pain in my right arm and no insurance so I just sat in a chair and suffered for a year. The docs said I pulled a muscle in my arm, but I knew that does not last for a year. I finally found a doctor who diagnosed me and I had disk replacement surgery in 2001. They replaced my disk with a cadaver bone. It releived a lot of my right arm pain immediately. They fused C5&6 and I now have herniated disks above and below the fusion. My arm continued to hurt for years, but I went to a physical therapist who found out that my shoulderblade was smashed into my ribs. When he pulled them apart it hurt a lot, but in the weeks that followed, my arm felt better than it had for years! At this time, my neck and arm still hurt, as the herniation in my neck is pretty swollen, and I am considering the cortizone treatments. My surgeon told me that he can do surgery again, but that it would just herniate the disks above and below that fusion, also. It would also further limit movement in my neck, so he recommended I hold off as long as I can. However, the pain causes me to miss work a lot and I worry about keeping my job. I am a computer operator. It is very frustrating to have a bad neck because nobody seems to believe the intensity of your pain, since you don't look sick. I just wanted to say to all of you that I know how you feel and I understand your frustration. If I could afford physical therapy, I would go every day to have them do the manual traction he did for me, because it helped a lot. Does anyone recommend the cortizone injections? I worry that it may just increase the pain and deteriorate the already degenerating disks that remain.
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I have muscle spasms also, and my doctor prescribed Neurontin, which is an anti-seizure medication. It helps me cope with the pain and does not cloud my brain, so I am able to go to work without tiredness or mental confusion. It helps with the arm pain and any neck spasms. I am unable to take percoset or any other pain meds, as they make me feel like I am overdosing. (dizziness, elevated heart rate and nausea) The Neurontin has helped me a lot, but it does have side effects that cause me to have nightmares and irritability. However, relieving the spasms is worth it to me.
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My work involves using the computer 8-10 hours a day and I found that when I arrange the monitor so that I am looking upwards, I am in much less pain. Looking down seems to put pressure on the titanium plate in the front of my neck and causes extreme pain and nausea. Looking up at the monitor causes much less pain, some days no pain at all! I sure hope this helps you!
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Who did your disappointing artificial disc replacement?  What disc model was used?
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Who is this doctor and where is he located? please
And does know of anyone else doing multi disc replacment in the lower Il., Ky. Ind. area that he may know of or you could find out about?
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I am contemplating the same procedure/location but will try an injectioin first. How did yours turn out. Do you play golf, tennis, ski? If so how is your motion, lack thereof, pain etc. Dan
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Hi Deborah,

I am feeling much better.  I would definitely recomend both the artificial disc replacement and my surgeon.  I would also recomend getting it taken care of as soon as possible,  not only so you can have immediate relief of your symptoms, but also so you don't cause any prolonged damage to the nerves that are being pinched.  I used Dr. Youkilis at St. Lukes Hospital.

Steve
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I just had a C 6-7 disk replacement on Monday (it is now Friday).   I am a 55 year old male, and went from a 3-4 pain level (neck) and 4-7 pain level (right arm) before surgery to a 1-2 discomfort level, and I do not even need to wear a cervical collar.   I had severe seemingly permanent muscle contractions in the right forearm, loss of feeling in the right hand index and middle finger, and numbness in the rest of the right hand.   I also had occasional numbness in the left arm, and the right leg.   I still have partial loss of feeling in the two finger tips on the right hand, but no spasms or pain.   Hopefully over time the feeling will recover.

I had the surgery in Nashua NH
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I am near St. Louis.  Which hospital?  Who was your surgeon?  How are you now?  Would you call the surgery a success?  Thanks!
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I am feeling much better.  I would definitely recomend both the artificial disc replacement and my surgeon.  I would also recomend getting it taken care of as soon as possible,  not only so you can have immediate relief of your symptoms, but also so you don't cause any prolonged damage to the nerves that are being pinched.  I used Dr. Youkilis at St. Lukes Hospital who uses the Prestige disc because he was able to get me in sooner.  There is also Dr. Kovolsky in Mt. Vernon IL who performs the surgery with the ProDisc brand. Post surgery I had immediate relief of the excruciating pain in my arms. 10 months post surgery I am still having mild pain and numbness which comes and goes but seems to be agravated by my extremely physical job and inflammation. I am usually able to manage the pain with ice, rest, ibuprofen and physical therapy exercises. I was told that it can take up to 1 year for the nerve to completely heal, that's what I'm hoping for.  Good luck.
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oh ii hear ya ~ i had neck done little over 2 yrs ago ~ i already had fusion at 2&3 at 20 ~ so dics started to bulge out ~ i really need need support from other in the same boat ~ meds of course b
delvelped bp after surgery bouts of serve pain feels like a stroke sometimes ~ oh yes hypertension 2 ~ on and on ~ have a bad disc in lower back also ~ sometimes i just cant handle it ~ ;(....
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thxs so much for ur words ~ i too suffer after surgery ~ lost job, social life ( to a degree ) husband of 28 yrs counldnt handle it anymore ~ live with younger daughter now ~ and i still have difficuilty handling the pain ~ everything hurts ~:(....
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Just wondering what facility and Dr. you used. I've made the decision of a disc replacement and live in the Manchetser NH area.  Thanks.
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Does anyone have any ideas on the Lazer Institute of America? There are several in us... i am closest to the one in Tampa, FL. I need neck and lower back surgery. both are messed up in serveral places. I am 44. my son is paralized so i have been just taking it since my early 20's but i can not go any longer and i just have to get help. Very afraid of [normal] disk fusion. i know it does not have a good sucess rate. denise
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Post -Op, 4/24/12. Front/ Lower neck, 6 inch long incesion. Had 3 discs removed at c4-5,c5-6, and c6-7. Then 4 cadavere verterbrae put in, Tiatinum plates, 8 Titanium screws. Also had a screw removed from R. shoulder that had backed out 1/2 turn and nerve grew under. Cat Scans in Nov/2012 show all plates have Collapsed to the right. Pain Level is Severe... back to where it was before surgery.
Surgeon says to fix he needs to remove bone from my hip, graft & fuse into the back of my neck. When I asked about  A.D.R., He said it will not work on a 3 level Cervical procedure. Any info on this would be gratefully appreciated.
Thanks. from Northern Ca.
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Dont know if you have had any luck finding more info on Stenum.  I had lower back surgerey (L4-L5 and L5-S1) there three years ago and I have not had a moment of pain since surgery.  It was an excellent experience and i would recommend to anyone.
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I had those exact same 3 levels done in my neck at Stenum Hospital in Germany 3 1/2 years ago now. They were replaced with the M-6 ADRs and thankfully I have been great ever since. Back then when I was told they would need to fuse those areas in my neck, I began my research on artificial disc replacement and found that they would NOT do 3 levels here in the US. They would do 1 if I was a good candidate and the levels above and below that level were in good shape which obviously was not the case in my situation. I don't know if things have changed anywhere here in the US by now-I don't understand why they won't since they have had such good results in other countries. If it is possible in your case, I would highly recommend at least checking it out! With fusion I would have lost most of the movement in my neck, but with the ADRs I have been able to retain my movement and continue on with the things I love to do. Good Luck to you!!
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I'm having a 2 level c4-5 and c5-6 at the Texas back institute this week. Do you know of the ProDisc-c? My doctor has done up to 4 levels and has been doing it for 10 years so I'm hoping this is the right choice. I've just heard of a newer device called the M-6. The ProDisc is FDA approved but not sure about the m-6.
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That is SO great to hear that they are doing multi-level replacements somewhere here in the US! I searched for somewhere in the US before I made my decision to go to Germany to have mine done but was unable to find anywhere. (I didn't have a lot of time though as I needed it done quickly to avoid the possibility of paralysis) They need to get the word out there for others like us who need this done and quickly!!
  I have heard of the ProDisc but really do not know much about it. They were using the newer M6 discs in Germany so that is what I had put in. I found it interesting that the M6 discs were actually made here in California but were not being used here at that time. Likely an FDA issue which holds a lot of things up.
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anyone from Chicago know of a good cervical surgeon? pinched nerve/spur c6/c7 seeing my general Dr on 2/25/13 need a referral
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Hope all is well and that your surgery was a success.  I am needing to do basically the same and would love to hear how your's went.  Can you tell me if your insurance covered it and what doctor performed your procedure?  I am in the Austin area.
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   I read your write up, and I'm so sorry. I was an engineer injured on the job back in 1990. It took many years of fighting suffering and struggle to start to get anywhere, so I thought.
     The top neuro Dr carried out my surgery which had amazing results, or so I thought. 3-4mnths later I was taking some courses to start a return to work, and the pain and dis-function slowly started to return, then rapidly nose dive. My Prof's sent me home and said it was obvious that's where I should be. As I had straight A's, I could return the follow year once the health issues were resolved.
     I saw my Doc who instantly had a hissy fit,as I dared to say his surgery didn't work. Physio wouldn't touch me and neither would other surgeons. Finally Mr bigshot agreed all wasn't right and after much trouble and re-examination he went back in, this time to find adhesive bony scar tissue, which took hr's to grind off my spinal cord and nerve roots.
     I knew nothing of this when I awoke the following morning, feeling great and relatively pain free, in comparison, I left the hospital in search of breakfast at 5am that morning walking. they discharged me 3days later, feeling great, that lasted 2 months, then the return to agony quickly took over.
    I then received zero treatment, zero insurance payments, as it was all my fault that his surgery didn't work out.
    Diagnosis was now RSD, MS, Fibromyalgia, and failed back syndrome and many more along the way. So many different drugs I lost count. Dilaudid worked, thank god. then slowly started to fail, luckily gabapentin was being prescribed and that worked. Also testosterone for me as a male really helped to build back muscle that I had lost, due to atrophy, 2yrs in a chair. Restoril for sleep and diazepam for spasm.
   I exercised and stretched constantly, swimming helped a lot and after 10yrs of pain, I got 10 limited by relatively bearable years.
   I am now 57yrs old and things are going south quickly, all levels have degeneration stenosis plus bone spurs and lesions. I am resigned and resolved to calling it a life, as surgery was the worst and most stupid thing I have done in my life.. It has cost me everything, thanks to staying away from further surgery, I had 10yrs. Had I gone under the knife again, I would have blown my brains out years ago, and as a single Dad with 2 boys to bring up, and no family. They have turned out to be my only true worthy accomplishment.
   Back surgery is a role of the dice at best, my doc's, just described this way:-  it helps one 1/3rd, does zip for another 1/3rd, and ruins the last 1/3rd and a bit. In my books that's really bad odd's, but it's what they get paid for. Not what they say when signing you up for your first surg.
   Most back problem can be helped with inversion tables, chiropractors, and a healthy life style. Even if shortened it's better than what the medical profession has to offer.
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Hello all, It has been four weeks now after a C4/5 operation. Symptoms- pins "n" Needles, numbness and total internal tremors. Night time is horrendous where I can actually here it coming on like a motor running through my ears. When this comes I have to move and try to stop the noise, If It doesn't stop there will be a build up of numbness. What I have to do is get out of bed and walk around until it stops. This happens frequently every night.
On the Scan there was clearly disc compression and degeneration so the operation was to replace with titanium joints. There were problems during the operation because I have ankylosing spondylitis in the spine and not realizing it also was in my neck which when exposed was evident that there were bridging of the discs. I had two serious bleeds and a csf leak so it was decided to fuse the disks and cage but could not decompress the right side of cord due to the risk of a further csf leak. It has been four weeks now and the numbness has significantly reduced but the internal tremors have worsened. Nor sure what the prognosis is but I am not optimistic and just after the operation the surgeon said it would be too risky for any further  operations.
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How did your surgery at the Texas Back Institute go?  Was it a 2-level artificial disc replacement?  Also, who is your doctor there?
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Had 2 tatanium disc replacements  (c5-c6 & c6-c7) in 2007 in Cyprus. Cost £2500 and was the best money I ever spent. 3 days after operation, was back to racing go-karts, coming 3rd in my first race. Suffered a soar throat for a few days as the operation was through the front of my neck. Arrived at the hospital at 8am for tests, operation at 4pm same day. Discharged from hospital 11.30 am next day. Total time in hospital 27 1/2 hours.
I would recommend this op to anyone. After years of pain, I have not had a single problem since and have full mobility of my neck.
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Had 2 tatanium disc replacements  (c5-c6 & c6-c7) in 2007 in Cyprus. Cost £2500 and was the best money I ever spent. 3 days after operation, was back to racing go-karts, coming 3rd in my first race. Suffered a soar throat for a few days as the operation was through the front of my neck. Arrived at the hospital at 8am for tests, operation at 4pm same day. Discharged from hospital 11.30 am next day. Total time in hospital 27 1/2 hours.
I would recommend this op to anyone. After years of pain, I have not had a single problem since and have full mobility of my neck.
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I HAD C5 C6 REPLACEMENT JULY OF 2010 AND HAD RELIEF FOR A FEW MONTHs THEN ALL OF MY SYMPTOMS BEFORE SURGERY CAME BACK. I GET INJECTIONS BUT THEY DONT HELP FOR LONG. IM ACTUALLY WORSE TODAY THAN BEFORE SURGERY. ALL I HEAR IS YOUR XRAYS LOOK FINE THEN I GET SENT BACK TO PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR 6 TO 8 MORE WEEKS. MY LEFT ARE HURTS CONSTANTLY I HAVE NUMBNESS ALOT OF PRESSURE WHERE MY IMPLANT IS AND THROAT PAIN. IF ANYONE HAS INFO ON A DOCTOR (BESIDES LOWCOUNTRY ORTHOPEDICS) IN SC THAT CAN HELP PLEASE PASS THE INFORMATION ALONG. IM AT MY BREAKING POINT
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I had C4-C5, C5-C6, C6-C7 total disc replacement about 18 months ago. I will say that my numbness and tingling in my arms has gone away, however my pain levels are about the same, a little less, but still higher than I would like. Not trying to discredit anyone on this site, but, anyone that says they dont have any residual pain I would love to talk to because I know about 10 people that have had the same or similar surgery and everyone of them has residual pain.
All that being said, if you have the headaches, numbness and tingling then I do recommend this surgery. I think its great that someone outside the military is able to have this surgery since its a new thing still not approved by the FDA in America.
Any other questions let me know please.
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I had those exact same 3 levels replaced in July of 2009 and I can honestly (and thankfully!) say that I do not have any residual pain. The nerve pain and tingling that I had before the surgery is gone and I have fewer headaches because of it. (Although I have familial tendencies for migraines and still get those occasionally but I do not think that is related.)
Maybe I am just very fortunate, but I wasn't aware that it was "the norm" for people to still have pain!! I am very sorry to hear that! :( What type of replacement did you have? Mine were the M6 artificial discs.
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I am having a disc replacement at the C5-C6 level in one week. What I am wondering is, it looks like you went to an orthopedic surgeon. I was told I needed a neurologist for this procedure. Have you been to see one? I was thinking maybe if you hadn't a neurologist might be able to help. I'm not sure what to do, I'm getting scared reading some horror stories, then other say it has worked. Very confusing.
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Where in Canada have you done your ADR surgery and which doctor ?
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Can you tell me where in BC you had your surgery and which surgeon? I wasn't sure they were doing disc replacements here yet.

Thank you.
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Did they just take out your disc or replace it?  My neuro-surgeon tells me my condition is serious and needs to be done.  I don't want to do it if it only leads me to more surgeries.  He wants to replace my C5 with a cadaver bone and fuse it to the C6.  I have lost the muscles in my left arm and losing in the right arm and right thigh.
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I think you need to do Back Disc Surgery. Don't take more time as it will create more complications. I was having the same problem I had treated from Same Day Spine Surgery. You can visit the site for more details - http://www.samedayspinesurgery.com/
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WHERE are you having the surgery?  What is your surgeons name?  I've been looking for disc replacement vs fusion and can find no doctors that do the surgery!  Please help
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WHERE are you having the surgery?  What is your surgeons name?  I've been looking for disc replacement vs fusion and can find no doctors that do the surgery!  Please help
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Hi, I am going in on July 8th for a two level disc replacement C4/5 C5/6, what was it like after the op pain wise etc...
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Just had third round of Botox, worked great first two times but not this time, many bad affects.  Be careful.
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did you find out anything about your physical condition or did you have surgery?  I have fibro and a C-5 disk problem.
Let me hear from you please as to how you are doing.
Thanks
***@****
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did you find out anything about your physical condition or did you have surgery?  I have fibro and a C-5 disk problem.
Let me hear from you please as to how you are doing.
Thanks
kathy
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Iʻve been there with most of you. Iʻve been in 5 rear-end collisions since I was 21 ( yes 5, I think Iʻm wearing a target) 2 side collisions and 2 of these resulting in bad whiplash. L1 thru L6 and my SI joint are so arthritic from the accidents, I have pain thru the entire bottom 1/2 of my body. I have trouble walking and standing.Iʻm also scoliotic Iʻve had pain so long ( Iʻm 60 now) it was something I just lived with. I had a discectomy in 2002 which didnʻt seem to help at all. 10 years of facet and spine injections convinced me and my surgeon it was time to try something else. He suggested doing a neuro-stimulator trial for 5 days to see if my spine and back could take it. It stimulates the pain nerves to tingle instead of have pain, and OMG it was so great, I cried when they had to take it out. The 3 weeks I had to wait to have the permanent one installed seemed like forever. Since the surgery, Iʻve been walking and doing most of the things I havenʻt done in years. You control the sensations, the speed of tingling, and the area of coverage. Itʻs amazing! once itʻs set you pretty much forget you have it.Check out the site for "Medtronic". They are also one of the makers of pacemakers and defibrillators.    
I also have the grinding and crunching of neck bones because of the multiple whiplashes with all the crashes. I had been seeing a chiro but it seemed to hurt more, so I took it upon myself to stop going and I havenʻt had much pain at all anymore.  
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Oh man, I'm in the same boat. I've been suffering pain down my arms for 3 years now. The 3 surgeons I've talked to so far all say "Sure, I'll do your neck" but cannot give a straight answer when asked if I SHOULD have it done or if it will help me. It seems like a complete crap shoot. You could be better, you could be worse. Next step for me is to go talk to yet another surgeon - this one some kind of high-powered guy in Seattle (I live in Hawaii) - to see if I can get some genuine advice from him. I'm only 56 and have always taken care of myself. It's just unfair.
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Hi,

I also have a lumbar spondolosis and cervical sponsolosis, and might go for fusion for my lumbar problem, do you think I will be granted Canadian PR visa if I go for the surgery?when is the best time to go for surgery, before my medical or after my medical?(i might have my m,ecial in Sept 2013
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I am considering going to Dr. Clavel in Oct of this year to have a 3 level ADR done.  Did you ever have him do it?  if so, are you happy with the results?  what type of disk did he put in?

Thank you so much
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Hi there,

Sorry, only noticed your post today.  Did you have the surgery yet?  How are you going?
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Hi there,

In my experience:  it is better to go for MRI and referral to Neurologist, before you go for your Visa/Immigration medical.

The Immigration Doctor picked up on my problem (I did not mention anything to him) and referred me to get a MRI and the whole Visa process was put on hold until I could send a report to him that I've had the operation and that it was successful.

If your Immigration Doctor notice it during his examination, then he might do the same and that delays the Visa-process dramatically!

All the best and let me know how it goes.
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I feel for you Amy997.  I am beginning to go through all this now after surgery March 20.  
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Hi Angie, I so wish I had seen this by the 8th.  I would have told you that my surgery was not so positive.  Now that it is over, I hope when you get well enough to get back on here, you will let me know how you are doing.  I had my C5 C6 fusion with plate on March 20 and still fighting the pain.  It's different pain then before the surgery, but worse as far as the pain goes.  I would not do it if I had it to do over again.  So wish I had just lived with the way things were.
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Don't do it, that's my answer
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The pain down my shoulders and under my collar bone are onstant,  My right thumb has very little strength which makes it difficult to grip things to carry.  No happy, quality of life very minimal and ruining my relationships.  
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Don't do the fusion.  I had it many years ago and now I am having really bad complications in the disc's above and below the surgery.  I do not go a minute without pain.  I used to be a triathlete and runner and now all I do is ice and lay flat on my back when I get home from work.  I am looking into disc replacement now.
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It's hard to deal with pain and it can be very scary. I use to be very active and only feel slight flares in my upper back. Ever since I've recovered from food poisoning  two years ago ,I've been with chronic pain in back of neck, my whole back sometimes left sometimes right also sciatica even scalp pain it's been so detrimental to even plan an outing somewhere. Reading and learning of everyone's experiences makes me feel I'm not alone. I pray a lot but can overwhelm myself in it that I just go to sleep being very conscious to,sleep with a flat enough pillow to support my neck and keeping my back aligned as possible without twisting or pinching anything. Eat as much colorful vegetables and fruits but be aware some may contain goitrophyrins that alter the production of the thyroid hormones we need to help balance the function of our organs and muscles.  Take care and I pray for God's intervention to help us.
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Hi All,

I'm age 34 and I too am suffering with shooting sharp pain down my left arm.  The numbness in thumb and index fingers and some in my left forearm as well.  The pain I feel everyday is at times unbearable and it never stops.  The medications I take ease it to a more tolerable level but it's still maddening to deal with.  The pain first started after a visit to the gym.  It would come and go and I just thought maybe I pulled a muscle in my back or something may be wrong with my rotator cuff.  I finally after months of dealing with this awful pain just woke up one morning and it felt like my arm from shoulder down was on fire and I was unable to move it hurt so bad and the pain has never left since.  My husband took me to the hospital that morning and they did an x-ray and said they need to refer me to an orthopedic surgeon because  it may be my rotator cuff..  That surgeon had a copy of the x-rays from the hospital that sent me to him and the report showed bulging in my spine and arthritis in several different spots but nothing wrong with my shoulder where I am feeling the pain come from that shoots down my arm. I was put on nerve, pain killer, anti-inflammatory, and muscle relaxer medications that just seemed to ease it but not fix it.  His idea was to come back in three weeks and hopefully the meds would have calmed the nerve down that was being pinched.  Well after the second week I called the doctor and said look this isn't helping something else needs to be done because I can't live like this anymore.  That week he ordered an MRI.  The third week I went in for his findings from the MRI.  He saw that the bulging in several different levels of the spine was the cause of my discomfort and believed if medicine hadn't helped so far I needed to start seriously thinking about surgery so he suggested I see a spine surgeon.  I asked to be referred to a place in the US called the South Eastern Spine Institute.  I did some research and knew the doctor I found there at that institute was one of the best.  I had an appointment the very next day. Upon his examination he knew exactly what was wrong.  He spent a good 45 minutes with me where as the doctor before seemed to be bumbling through his findings, never showed me the MRI and just wasn't as thorough.  The spine surgeon told me he is very conservative when it comes to surgery and only about 10% of the people he sees actually needs it.  So when he told me he strongly recommended surgery because of the herniated disc in C6/C7 was pinching the nerve and the longer it stays that way the more likely permanent damage is being done to the nerve I knew I needed to go through with it.  He said I could try the shots and give it another ten days and sometimes that works but his professional advice was I had a 1 in 4 chance the shots would work but I had a 3 out of 4 chance it won't and then  asked me if I wanted to chance it as long as it has been for me with this pain. Could I stand to go another two weeks like this and I said no. It had already been months.  The doctor then went over my options for surgery.  I go Friday, which is tomorrow, to a place called East Cooper Medical Center to have a Anterior Cervical Discectomy with Fusion for C6/C7.  It was suppose to be my doctor's day off but he understood the importance of doing it soon so l come out of this with little to no nerve damage.  I believe he's very compassionate and understanding of how awful painful this is for me and others like me going through this.  It can drive you crazy.  And he knew I had already suffered too long.  He could see it in my face and body language during the visit.  To finally understand what it is and to know what needs to be done is a huge relief to me.  Now I just have to face the next hurtle and I hope to come out better for it in the end.  He said the relief from pain I will have once he releases the pressure off that nerve is instantaneous and I can't wait. I know there's no guarantee with surgery but I feel it's the best shot for myself and my condition to going back to being normal again.  The operation takes about 45 minutes and I will stay overnight and be released next day if all is well.  He said in about two weeks, because his procedure through the front of the neck is so noninvasive, I should be able to drive again.  And in six weeks I should be fine to return to work. In six months I won't hardly be able to see the cut.  Because he cuts a small 2 inch incision in the natural crease of the neck and pushes everything to the side the down time is short  I feel I'm doing the right thing with the right doctor.  Wish me luck and when I can I will post the outcome.
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did you get this resolved?  I am working on an appeal right now for an anterior cervical c5-c7 and Aetna is denying the procedure. They awhile reviewing and their medical director spoke to my surgeon and still upheld the denial saying we had to resubmit as an appeal. Reading your experience really shook me up. My email is ***@****. Any information you can provide would be much appreciated
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Hi! My name is Christy! I'm so very sorry to hear Everyone's pain.. I too live it each and every single day, all day.. I've had a cervical fusion (titanium -plate with screws- with cadaver) back on December 4, 2006; I've been told ever since, that I'm still in need of 4 more levels to be fused.. One very well known surgeon even referred (off the record of course) to go out of our USA to get a multi-level cervical fusion done. That was several years ago. Since, I've been doing much research to find out which is the absolute best method for me to get to be "able" again.. so far, I've found that the ADR (Artificial Disc Replacement) is the best. I don't understand which "Artificial Disc" is best to go with; that's still to be determined. It's so very hard to believe that ALL of this horrifying pain, ALL from helping my dear cousin (who has chosen not to speak to me since this injury-we were so close too, all of our lives) find her a good inversion table, since I, myself, had a great one and lived on same for well over 5yrs back then.. Injured on a Sunday, my only day off, was a Paralegal (Family Law) for 13yrs til this injury.. Now, I'm a complete shadow of myself.. Actually, ever since the injury.  Wasn't able to eat for 7 mos, except through a straw and/or extremely soft foods (mashed potatoes, ice cream, yogurt), told by hospital I had complete body whiplash and everything was "locked".. No physical therapy, nothing but pain meds that I truly hate to take, however, are the only things that help me get out of bed.. It's been over 7 1/2 yrs since this injury and it hasn't gotten any easier.. I still fight so hard to keep my Faith.. I'm VERY thankful that it didn't paralyze me.. the store's inversion table that they put together wrong out on display, and owner continues to lie and won't help me get surgeries I need-nothing... God knows, I want to be ABLE again, so VERY VERY badly.. ABLE to do things I Love, even the things I hate.. To be ABLE again.. After reading Everyone's posts.. I'm still as torn as I was before.. Very few have good results, and so many live in such horrible disabling pain.. I FEEL FOR ALL OF YOU!!! MY HEART TRULY BREAKS when I'm reading your stories of your lives.. My heart and my prayers go out to each and every single one of you!!!!!! Prayers for healing, prayers for you all to be able to get your lives back again!!!!!! I TRULY get it!!!!!!! I'm SO VERY SORRY for what you ALL have to live with.. So many don't really get it.. They don't understand what they don't/can't see.. Even though it's (pains') all over our faces; and we may smile through said horrific pain, that is, til we can no  longer bare it; God knows it's always there.. GOD BLESS EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU!!!!!!!! I have a question: Has anyone out there heard of the Artificial Disc Replacement Center, PLEASE let me know.. They are wanting to do an ADR on C5-C6; says it will allow other discs in my neck to "flex" and straighten up out of my spinal cord.. That or it's 4 more cervical fusions, plus more and more fusions over the course of my life, til there's nothing left to fuse...I've put off doing anything for so long, that I know it's real close to "having" to do something.. I know so many of you say, "Not to get surgery, ever".. though what would happen IF one doesn't get it when so terribly needs it/disc(s) out of their spinal cord..? I don't think that would be very good either.. To just let it go, also seems like a no win.. I hope and pray we will ALL get relief from this life consuming nightmare!!!!!!!! <3 <3 <3 GOD BLESS!!!!!!! <3 <3 <3 <3
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I feel for  you as well....and will pray for your return to being ABLE to do things again!! I would definitely NOT go for any more fusion-now days the ADRs are doing so much to help you keep your mobility. I just did a little research and found out that there are FINALLY places here in the US that can and will do multi-level replacements. 4 years ago, I needed 3 levels replaced and had to go to Germany to have it done. (All they would do here in the US was fusion at that time.) I had 3 M-6 artificial discs put in and can honestly say it was the best (although the scariest) decision I ever made. I regained/retained the movement in my neck so I can still do the things I love to do-especially down hill skiing! I have not heard of the place you mentioned, unless it is the one in Texas I read about online? I wish you ALL the best in your quest for recovery.....God Bless!!
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Paul A. Anderson, MD (University of Wisconsin, Madison). Dr. Anderson is a professor of orthopedic surgery at the University of Wisconsin and a member of SAS-International Society for the Advancement of Spine Surgery. He has a professional interest in complex cervical spine disorders and has research focusing on the development of an artificial cervical disc. His additional research interests include the advancement of spinal fixation implants and disc regeneration. Throughout his career, Dr. Anderson has published articles in professional journals about several topics, including a comparison of the short-term results between total joint arthroplasty and cervical spine decompression and fusion. Dr. Anderson earned his medical degree at Wayne State University Medical School, where he also completed his residency. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.
Hyun Bae, MD (Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles). Dr. Bae is the co-director of the spine fellowship program at the Cedars-Sinai Spine Center. He has a professional interest in minimally invasive surgery, motion preservation technology, non-fusion technologies and artificial disc replacement. Dr. Bae was among the first surgeons to use multi-level artificial disc replacements for both the lumbar and cervical spine. His research is also on the cutting edge of using growth factor tissue engineering for intervertebral discs. Dr. Bae earned his medical degree from Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., and he completed his orthopedic surgery residency at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. His additional training includes a spine fellowship at Case Western Reserve Hospital in Cleveland.

Scott Blumenthal, MD (Texas Back Institute, Plano). Dr. Blumenthal is a co-director of Texas Back Institute's Center for Disc Replacement, along with Richard Guyer, MD, and Jack Zigler, MD. He played a key role in the country's first trial of the Charite artificial disc and was among the first surgeons to perform a total disc replacement in the United States. He recently published research on the two- and five-year follow-up results of the total disc replacements he performed, and he lectures widely on both lumbar and cervical disc replacement procedures. In addition to his practice, Dr. Blumenthal also serves as a spine consultant for the Dallas Mavericks and is a clinical assistant professor of orthopedic surgery at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. Dr. Blumenthal earned his medical degree at Northwestern Medical School in Evanston, Ill., and completed his residency in orthopedic surgery at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Dallas. His additional training includes a trauma fellowship at Midwest Regional Spinal Cord Injury Care System at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago.

Rolando Garcia, Jr., MD (Orthopedic Care Center). Dr. Garcia is a member of the SAS-International Society for the Advancement of Spine Surgery and the North American Spine Society. He has participated in several studies about total disc replacement surgery, including the FDA Charite trial and a comparison of the clinical outcomes for lumbar artificial disc replacement and fusion procedures. In addition to his journal articles, he has authored a book chapter on the history of the artificial disc. Dr. Garcia earned his medical degree at Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans, where he also completed his residency in orthopedic surgery. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at North Carolina Spine Center.

Jeff L. Garr, MD (Orthopedic Physician Associates, Seattle). Dr. Garr performs several procedures, including disc replacement, X-Stop, lateral lumbar interbody fusion and anterior, posterior and transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion. He is a member of many professional organizations, including the North American Spine Society and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. He is also a volunteer medical provider for local high school athletic teams. Dr. Garr earned his medical degree at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., and completed his residency at the University of Washington in Seattle. His additional training includes a fellowship with the Spine Care Medical Group in Daley City, Calif.

Jeffrey A. Goldstein, MD (Seaport Orthopaedic Associates, New York City). Dr. Goldstein is the director of the spine service and the associate director of spine fellowship at NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases in New York City. He has an expertise in minimally invasive surgical techniques and his current research involves clinical trials for lumbar and cervical disc replacements. In addition to his clinical work, Dr. Goldstein serves on the editorial board for The Spine Journal and The Journal of the Spine Arthroplasty Society. Throughout his career, Dr. Goldstein has instructed several other surgeons on disc replacement techniques and served in an advisory capacity to news media outlets. He is a member of several professional societies, including the North American Spine Society and Society of Nucleus Arthroplasty. Dr. Goldstein earned his medical degree from State University of New York Downstate Medical Center at Brooklyn and completed his training in orthopedic surgery at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland. He also completed a fellowship in spinal disorders at Johns Hopkins University Medical Institute in Baltimore.

James Rappaport, MD (Sierra Regional Spine Institute, Reno). Dr. Rappaport was the principle investigator for the Kineflex Lumbar and Cervical Disc Replacement clinical trials at St. Mary's Regional Medical Center in Reno, and he has authored a professional article based on the results. Dr. Rappaport is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and a member of several other professional societies. He is also a team physician for the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association and has been a spine surgeon representative to the U.S. Department of Defense. Throughout his career, Dr. Rappaport has given several presentations on minimally invasive spine surgery techniques. Dr. Rappaport earned his medical degree at the University of California School of Medicine in San Francisco, where he also completed his residency in orthopedic surgery. His additional training includes spine surgery fellowships at the Texas Institute for Spinal Disorders in Houston and at London (England) Clinic.

Rick Sasso, MD (Indiana Spine Group, Indianapolis). Dr. Sasso is a founding member and president of the Indiana Spine Group. He is also the co-medical director of the St. Vincent Spine Center in Indianapolis and the chief of spine surgery at Indiana University School of Medicine. His research interests include cervical and lumbar arthroplasty, cervical spine biomechanics and intraoperative spinal image navigation. Throughout his career, Dr. Sasso has published articles in professional journals on several topics, including his research into the Bryan Artificial Disc.. His additional training includes fellowships in spine surgery at Northwestern University in Chicago, Baylor University in Houston and AO Spine in Switzerland.

Saqib Siddiqui, MD (The Spine Center, Houston). Dr. Siddiqui is the president and CEO of The Spine Center. He has a professional interest in minimally invasive solutions for spine surgery and disc replacement.

Jim Youssef, MD (Spine Colorado, Durango). Dr. Youssef has a professional interest in lumbar artificial disc replacement, minimally invasive procedures and scoliosis surgery. He earned his medical degree at the University of California in Irvine and completed his residency in orthopedic surgery at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, N.H. His additional training includes a fellowship in spine surgery at the University of California in Sacramento.
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I would love to know who did your surgery. I am facing spinal fusion and don't want it.  I am hoping to find a good surgeon to do ADR.  Thank you.
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Wcd1 - thank you , thank you , thank you!  I am now corresponding with Dr. Blumenthal in Plano, TX and hope to avoid fusion.
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Social Security turns down about 40% of first filing. The first appeal is automatic and there are several more possible. Best thing would be to get one of the lawyers that specialize in this.
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I recently had a a cervical disc replaced and I am experiencing no relief...before the surgery I had pain down my right arm...now I have pain down both arms and down my spine...has anyone else experienced this
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Hi Micki723,

Your situation sounds similar to mine.  I have a partially bulging disc and some vertebral arthritis at C5/6 since I had a whiplash injury 4 years ago.  I have constant pain in the neck and shoulder and I have tried every non-surgical treatment I could possibly try. I was wondering if you've found anything that is helpful.  I haven't and I have started to think about a fusion surgery, but am scared of it.  I recently got a second opinion and the new Dr. suggested a discogram, which is scary too.  Hope you are doing better than I.  
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Just had c5/c6 and c6/c7 replaced!
In on Monday, operated on Monday 2pm, home today midday!!
Pain relief good, no going cars or driving for 15 days!
RDV with surgeon 6 weeks time.
We live in France, good healthcare.
Good Luck
Jackie
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any dr.'s in the boston area that do drs?
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How many of you have been recommended to take up swimming to improve your back or neck problem?  Of those who have been told this, how many have followed this advice?  

I personally can't recommend more the value of swimming for helping strength your back or neck and aid in the recovery from injury.

I have disc bulges in both my neck and lower back.  Swimming has been the only activity that has had a long term benefit.

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I am facing the same thing.  Can you tell me who your surgeon was in St. Louis ?
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Dr. Youkilis at St.  Luke's Hospital in St. Louis did my c6-c7 disc replacement. There also is Dr. Kovalski at the Orthopaedic Center of Southern IL, in Mt. Vernon, IL who did it on a coworker of mine. We both have had good results.

Good luck
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I live in New Jersey and looking for neurosurgeon nearby who performs artificial disc replacement. Do you know of any names. Good luck with your recovery.
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I have disc problems in the same locations with numbness in my left hand consistently and sometimes up the arm. I am an avid runner - do several half marathons a year - and this has horribly impacted that. I have had 4 cortisone shots over the past 3 years and they seem to help for a short while. Nothing I do, exercize, yoga, traction, cortisone shots, oral steroids, chiropractic care, etc. have helped for anything other than short term. The pain is always there and sometimes it's unbearable. I'm now going to have the surgery. Btw- I'm 38 and have been dealing with this and it's gotten progressively worse over the past 10 years. Fingers crossed that the surgery wl help.
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Laser Spine Inst stay away from! I am talking about the one In Tampa!! They did a "surgery" on my husband which didn't do anything for him. Nuerosugeon looked at his CT scan and said they didn't really do anything. Don't do fusion either. My husband did that 1999 and has caused problems since. Look into artficial disk replacment (ADR) great success rate!
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My husband needs same disc's replaced and we are looking into it now. We have been do extensive researched into Germany to get this procedure done. Where did you go and who did your surgery?
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Hi, I am scheduled for C5/6 and C6/7 disc replacement similar to yours on Nov 26, 2013. I am extremely nervous but hopeful. I have on again off again left arm pain and numbness and chronic upperback pain. I am as stiff as a board. I dont get much relief and sleeping at nights are becoming an increasing challenge.
I am 33 years old and the rish of permanent nerve damage is my greatest worry. My surgery will be done by a nuerosurgon.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Your employer has bought and paid for the doctors and they say what they are told by their employer and your ex employer! And they know the right doctors and the money is paid and you have a terrible uphill battle and will only find lawyers that will tell you that thay will get every dime you deserve. And will. This system is so corrupt that the appeals judge just ruled, that two neck fusions one of which was a failure and my arm and shoulder pain got over the roof bad and my posture was stooping forward causing back problems,that thos surgeries caused no impairment and no mobility restrictions. What a crock! The system is corrupt to the core! Bribes are the norm. Do you have much money now you can't work? Right thay have you, the slaves have no rights! In court with Port Townsend Paper corp.
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Avatar_f_tn
My Husband just got back from Germany. Dr. Bergantoli SUCCESSFULLY did a three level replacment on my hubby, and he feels great! The doctor also had to remove a plate from a 1999 fusion which was the cause for all his recent problems there we sought out ADR surgery. He said he would most def recommend Dr. Bergantoli!! I hope this got to you in time..
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Avatar_f_tn

My Husband just got back from Germany. Dr. Bergantoli SUCCESSFULLY did a three level replacment on my hubby, and he feels great! The doctor also had to remove a plate from a 1999 fusion which was the cause for all his recent problems there we sought out ADR surgery. He said he would most def recommend Dr. Bergantoli!! I hope this got to you
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Avatar_n_tn
Gosh, I haven't checked this post in years!  I hope your surgery went well.  I'm facing another surgery in the future, for the adjacent levels.  I have been putting it off because I've been dealing with my parent's health issues, but I hope to have it done in the next year.
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Avatar_f_tn
I just had a three level surgery (2 artificial disc replacement at the C4-C5 and C5-66 levels and a fusion at C6-C7).  Before the U.S. only approved one level disc replacement which is why a lot of people were going to Europe.  When I first saw my neurosurgeon for my initial consult, I was told I could only get one disc replacement using Prodisc-C and the other two fused. Needless to say, I was not feeling the fusion.  I'm in the military and I was going to fight my case to get sent to Europe to get multiple levels as opposed to nearly my entire neck fused.  This past August the U.S. FDA approved Mobi-C, a two level device, or surgery allowing two levels.  That is the device I ended up getting 18 Dec 13.  In 2 days I was just cleaning and reorganizing items in my house like a mad woman. I think I was afraid that if I laid up in the bed I wouldn't heal quickly.  And my best friend, who was my caretaker, was leaving in a few days and I wanted to be able to do for myself when she left.   I have had to slow it down because this is not what you're supposed to do after a major surgery such as this.  I was just hard headed.  There is soreness and pain from the fusion level still and muscle stiffness, but so far so good.  The only thing I'm still dealing with is not being able to sleep on my back.  Because the trachea is moved over during the surgery, it feels like my throat closes up on me and I wake up gasping a little for air (kind of like sleep apnea).  SO I make sure to sleep on my side until I start physical therapy.  Also, I'm experiencing some acid reflux.  Hopefully, that goes away.  But overall, I'm doing well and even driving a little bit, but not at night.  I don't feel comfortable trying to turn my head for traffic at night just yet.
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329165_tn?1385201516
Hi there,

I apologize for only replying now.  I somehow missed your post.

I trust you had successful surgery and that you are feeling so much better!  I am now almost 3 years post-op from my fusion and life is good!  I do have a lot of limitations when it comes to doing things with my kids (not advisable to jump on an air pillow and foofy-slides or try and peppa kids on shoulders!) but other than that I have had a very successful fusion.

Hope to hear from you again.  Take care,
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi, I had same surgery and after seven months, the pain was worse in the exact same place it hurt before the surgery.  I have been checked with x-rays several times and surgeon keeps saying everything looks fine!  That makes me so angry because I feel as though he doesn't care or acts like I am complaining for no reason.  I was told before surgery that if I did not have it done and was in a car accident or fell, I could be crippled forever because of the compression on the spinal cord.  I feel so distrustful because after insisting over and over that something is wrong, I told him I wanted a CT.  He ordered an MRI and the results came back not normal.  bulging disk at c6-7 and nerve root impingement in c5-6 again.  Radiologist says he can't tell for sure if it is a recurrent hernation to C5-6 which is why I had the surgery or bone spur.  So when I gave it to the surgeon, he wanted the computer disk as well.  Then he says it is fuzzy and he wants me to have another one with a radiology department acrossed the street from him.  Said it was a better MRI machine.  So I have it done and when I call with disk and MRI completed, the surgeon's office makes me an appointment for almost a month from the day I had it done.  I get so angry that he acted like it was such a big hurry to have the surgery done and now he doesn't care enough to get me in right away to let me know of the results.  I do know one thing, after I do have my appt with him, I will get a second opinion.  I am tired of living in pain and I can honestly say that I feel the man doesn't care.  He's got his money.  Now he wants me to disappear.  The pain has become so debilitating that I am thinking of quiting my job because I suffer daily and it is worse every day.  I have been off for Christmas break for a few weeks and feel a bit better since I don't have to move, bend, lift, push and pull constantly day in and day out, so I realize that if I didn't work, I could have some kind of life.  Right now, my life is get up, go to work, come home, hit the couch, go to bed.  I waken several times through the night in pain.  It's just becoming more than I can bare and I don't know what else to do.  I've done physical therapy for 14 weeks, I've had many epideral injections.  The pain relievers help but I am always just chasing the pain and living to work for insurance just so I can afford to go back to the doctor.  No fun, no enjoyment in life, no quality of life anymore.  Just surviving.  SWEETS000 please let me know how things turn out for you.  Take care
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi lawdog, I had c5-6 ACDF with plate in March, and after eight months, the pain was worse in the exact same place it hurt before the surgery.  I have been checked with x-rays several times and surgeon keeps saying everything looks fine!  That makes me so angry because I feel as though he doesn't care or acts like I am complaining for no reason.  I was told before surgery that if I did not have it done and was in a car accident or fell, I could be crippled forever because of the compression on the spinal cord.  I feel so distrustful because after insisting over and over that something is wrong, I told him I wanted a CT.  He ordered an MRI and the results came back not normal.  bulging disk at c6-7 and nerve root impingement in c5-6 again.  Radiologist says he can't tell for sure if it is a recurrent hernation to C5-6 which is why I had the surgery or bone spur.  So when I gave it to the surgeon, he wanted the computer disk as well.  Then he says it is fuzzy and he wants me to have another one with a radiology department acrossed the street from him.  Said it was a better MRI machine.  So I have it done and when I call with disk and MRI completed, the surgeon's office makes me an appointment for almost a month from the day I had it done.  I get so angry that he acted like it was such a big hurry to have the surgery done and now he doesn't care enough to get me in right away to let me know of the results.  I do know one thing, after I do have my appt with him, I will get a second opinion.  I am tired of living in pain and I can honestly say that I feel the man doesn't care.  He's got his money.  Now he wants me to disappear.  The pain has become so debilitating that I am thinking of quiting my job because I suffer daily and it is worse every day.  I have been off for Christmas break for a few weeks and feel a bit better since I don't have to move, bend, lift, push and pull constantly day in and day out, so I realize that if I didn't work, I could have some kind of life.  Right now, my life is get up, go to work, come home, hit the couch, go to bed.  I waken several times through the night in pain.  It's just becoming more than I can bare and I don't know what else to do.  I've done physical therapy for 14 weeks, I've had many epideral injections.  The pain relievers help but I am always just chasing the pain and living to work for insurance just so I can afford to go back to the doctor.  No fun, no enjoyment in life, no quality of life anymore.  Just surviving.  I know your pain, lawdog and sounds like you have the same problem.  I had pain before the surgery, but it is now must worse then before.  I wish I had lived with the pain then.  At least it was not as bad as it is now.  :(  Hope you find relief or an answer to this.  Please let me know if you do.  And I will let you know how the second MRI turns out when I get to go see the surgeon again.  
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Avatar_f_tn
I had a 4 disc cervical fusion 4 months ago, and seem to be getting worse,   I feel good when I first get up in just a few minutes,  my left hand goes numb, and I have difficulty walking I just go stiff in my lower body,  The Dr. told me it could take up to a year to heal,  seems to me more like a spinal stenosis...
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Avatar_m_tn
can anyone recommend an experienced surgeon in CA or AZ for cervical disk replacement?
Thanks
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi dear,
you did not mentioned where you did the surgery and how much did that cost you and how are feeling now. my C6/7 is herniated and I am planing but have no insurance and don't know how much it cost.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi dear,
you did not mentioned where you did the surgery and how much did that cost you and how are feeling now. my C6/7 is herniated and I am planing but have no insurance and don't know how much it cost.
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329165_tn?1385201516
Hi there,

I apologize for only getting back to you now.

I had my surgery done in South Africa.  I had a complication during surgery and was in ICU for a few days and then normal ward until I got discharged.  The surgeon accidently cut my Carotid artery while extracting his instruments.  Any surgery unfortunately has its risks and you have to take that into consideration.

You need to book an Orthopaedic Surgeon and a Neuro Surgeon and Anaesthetist.  Theatre time and Hospital ward.  I can unfortunately not help you with Surgeons in the USA, but please do research and get the best Neuro Surgeon.

All the best and let me know how you are doing.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had  5 seperate cervical surgeries, for the same reasons you have described.  It started in 2006 through 2012. I am 57 years old and post-menopausal. Which I have been told makes recovery much more difficult. I am also considered "small boned" which can cause additional healing problems. I did go to a wonderful neurosurgeon.  I have recovered the use of my hands and some strength in my arms. The pain has never gone away and I have been a pain management patient for 6 years.

It is the dependency on pain meds that is now an additional issue. I am not trying to frighten yoe, just be very careful, get a 3rd opinion, because it cannot be undone. Good luck and I will follow your progress!
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Avatar_m_tn
which doctor did you use in BC ?  I am from ontario but willing to travel for disc replacement surgery Only found one doctor in ontario that does artificial replacements and he is booked for more than a year.  Anyone know any other surgeons in ontario or canada?
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi, my surgeon here in alberta want to fusion my L5/S1 in my low back, but I want to find out about disk replacement. I can't find anyone here in alberta, who was your doctor and where did you have your surgery?
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Avatar_n_tn
Did you go to Texas? How are you doing now?
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Avatar_n_tn
How are you doing? Who is your Dr at Texas Back?
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow. Congrats! Do you know which disc you've got?
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Avatar_m_tn
If I were you I would find a doc that will do the artificial disc. I wanted to get that on my C6/C7 but I moved to go with a renowned surgeon and he fused my disc.
Needless to say he said it was the worst he has ever seen and I still have neck problems. been 1.5 yrs since the surgery and I did the surgery to get off pain meds, that and it was excruciating.
Now I am having to come to the realization that my neck will be like this forever.

I can't help thinking the artificial disc would've been better because it did wonders for my Lumbar when i had it installed in 2010.

Good luck with whatever decision and if you have to travel for the arthroplasty, do it! Cheers
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