My brother (26 yrs) stuck up with an accident. It resulted him with C5 slight fracture (wedge) and which resulted in mild cord compression. Due to this he had paralysis in right upper/lower limbs. CTS and MRI of Brain and Spine was done. No damage to brain and spine has happened according to neurosergeon. But due to C5 fracture and mild compression, ortho sergeon recommended surgery (fixing the C5 by putting plate and removing the mild compression). We took the three neuro sergeons opinion and all suggested not to go for surgery as there is no damage to spine. They suggested it a very delicate operation and there is a risk of damage to spine during surgery which may result in permanent paralysis. Also they suggested that damage to the C5 is just 20% and it will be healed naturally. Still for internal satisfaction, i showed the report to different spine surgeon and he suggested for surgery to remove compression. But still the neuro sergeons were not recommending it. We went with neuro-sergeons suggestion and didn't go for surgery and put my brother under neuro surgeons supervision. Currently my brother is discharged by the doctor and the doctor recommended 4-6 weeks complete rest to heal the crack of C5 naturally. This is the 3rd week after the accident. Currently my brother can walk, sit and move his hands and fingers. Still full control in fingers is yet not come and also the strength in right hand is still lacking. Now my question is, Was it the right decision for not going for surgery? Will this mild compression to the cord remain forever? Is there a chance of problem in future? After 6 weeks (recovery), will he be able to lead normal life without any pain in neck and hand and leg? How much time it will take to get full movement/control of right hand/fingers?
It will be difficult for me to tell you how much time it will take for his recovery. The decision for non-surgical approach is good as long as your brother takes extra care of his neck. He will not be allowed to lift weights. The healing process may take six weeks or more. You should not worry much about the decision now. The neurosurgeons have advised you after they have assessed the situation.
The mild compression may be relieved by judicious physical therapy.
I'm not the doctor so perhaps I should be quite on this, but....i had to have surgery decompression recently. I had severe muscle weakness that happened overnight from a herniated disc. Because of the extreme weakness I had surgery.
I would trust the three NS, but also be sure they are contacted should the condition change or worsen.
Just because someone has surgery does not guarantee anything. While my NS is optomistic about my condition, surgery was not a guarantee I will be "normal" afterward. Many people have surgery and end up with more problems than they started with.
Best wishes for your brother. He is lucky to have such a caring sister.
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