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Cervical Spine Stenosis/Surgery?
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Cervical Spine Stenosis/Surgery?

Good Morning!
I have severe spinal stenosis at C5-6  due to a bone growth into the cord. Ihave had 3 previous surgeries two anteriorly and last year Decompression Laminectomies C4-C6 with plates and screws.
The decompression was not successful, and have been advised that my only options is Surgery. This would be performed anteriorly, remove the bone and plate the front of the neck.  I have been advised that this is high risk, but If I do not have this I will continue to worsen.  Presently my both arms, hands, bil. legs and bladder have been affected (weakness, pain, shocking in arms,etc.)
Upon examination the Dr.said my reflexes in both legs are extremely brisk and have increased "a grade" in the last 8 mons.
Would you explain what areas of the body does C5-6 affect and if I opt for no surgery, would the worsening most likely be gradual.
Both my Neurologist and Neurosurgeon feel worsening to the point of paralysis is quite imminent. Unfortunately, this is a big decision I have to make.  Any information or insight into this would be greatly appreciated.
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Dear Karen:

Sorry to hear about your spine problems.  Different segments of the spinal cord go to different parts of your body.  The cranial nerves go to your head and fact, those in the cervical cord go to the upper arms etc.  However, when the whole spinal cord gets compressed, from the point of the compression and below are effected.  Your C4-C6 lesion is affecting from the upper body downward.  Depending on the part of the spinal cord that is more effected, front or back, that will tend to indicate the location of where you will have more symptoms.  Sounds like yours is posterior columns as your legs are involved.  Pathological brisk reflexes are a sign that the column (and/or upward to the brain) are being compromised.  This would indicate a worsening of the spinal cord compromise.  Whether surgery is the only option, is impossible for me to say, but what you describe it sounds like this may be the case.  Remember that surgery may or may not help and the degree of what is helped may be variable from patient to patient.  I hope that things work out for you.

Sincerely,

CCF Neuro MD
7 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Karen,

Sorry to hear of your problems.  I would like to communicate with you.  I'm in a similar situation.

My address is:  ***@****

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Avatar_n_tn
Karen,

I have a similar situtation. I would like to communicate
with you.

Bob
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello Bob
I would be pleased to communicate with you. You may email me
at:  ***@****
Hope to hear from you soon
Karen
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Avatar_n_tn
A cervical MRI done last week revealed a moderate to large HNP toward the right at C4-5 with cord compression, moderate to large HNP at C5-6 with cord compression and moderate to severe left foraminal stenosis at C5-6.  Two opinions from neurosurgeons recommend surgery of an ACD C 4-5 and C5-6 and arthrodesis with aliograft and instrumentation.  Seeking a third opinion next week.  I'm a 45 y.o. male and concerned about other options.  Did you consider anything else?  Email me at ***@**** if you have any suggestions.  Good luck to you, too!

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Avatar_n_tn
A cervical MRI done last week revealed a moderate to large HNP toward the right at C4-5 with cord compression, moderate to large HNP at C5-6 with cord compression and moderate to severe left foraminal stenosis at C5-6.  Two opinions from neurosurgeons recommend surgery of an ACD C 4-5 and C5-6 and arthrodesis with aliograft and instrumentation.  Seeking a third opinion next week.  I'm a 45 y.o. male and concerned about other options.  Did you consider anything else?  Email me at ***@**** if you have any suggestions.  Good luck to you, too!

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Avatar_n_tn
I was just reading sights about Cervical Spine Stenosis and came across this web sight.  I was DX last fall with Severe spinal stenosis,I had three MRIs ,all three sections of my back.I have herniations of C4-5, C5-6,and C6-7 also 4-5 level shows mod flattening and obliteration of the Ventral subarachnoid space. At C5-6 level there is significant right sided cord flattening and mild counterclockwise rotation of the cord. The compression is all on the Ventral side of the cord.My Thoracic MRI denotes multilevel disc space narrowing and desication, which means the discs have lost their center and therefore the space between vertibrae is very narrow @ T-6 is a large herniated disc also. In my lumbar spine is a smll disc and severe arthritic changes. My Question is where do We start?? The MRIs were done3-29-00.   My neurosurgeon is reluctant to do any surery at this time,but I can't live like this much longer. With so much involved I am very afraid. I am 51 have lost my career I was an RN for 29 1/2 yrs. I have noises in my ears like high pitched all the time, severe debilitating headaches,sharp pains in both arms off and on ,intermiitent numbness in last two fingers of both hands, terrible sweating for no reason as I am certainly not active anymore,I have back pain and tingling in the L posterior Rib Cage, comes and goes but is becoming more frequent The lumbar spine is painfullto moreso when I satand for a short period... This is a lot I know but sure would like some feedback esp. on neck, I have to do something whether it helps or not I can't take it anymore.
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