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Neck and Shoulder pain after C5-6 fusion.
A little over a year ago, I had C5-6 fused. With a plate and screws inserted. Since then I am having trouble with pain in the neck and shoulder area just below the fusion area. I wake in the morning with a headache then turns to pain in lower neck and shoulders.
I have talked to the neurosurgeon who did the surgery and he shrugged his shoulders and said I have no idea and sent me back to my neurologist. He gave me a series of injections in both shoulders and the pain stopped for a couple days but then came right back. Then we tried message therapy, it helps but only for a short period. And I have tried changing my pillows on my bed and sleeping in different positions and nothing seems to help for long term.
What can I do?
Thanks
Maureen
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Wow. I stumbled upon this site by accident, looking for information of something I caught on TV about defective neck fusions / grafts.  I too have had multiple surgeries, multiple levels, and still experience the same pains and limitation I hear in all of these comments.  It is very sad and discouraging.  Anyone considering a neck fusion, I would try to persuade you to manage it in other methods.  

Regarding the last comment, I too had my last surgery trying to "fix" one that never fused from two prior surgeries.  With this last surgery, they went in from both the front and back of the neck, fused and inserted a substance that is like concrete.  No doubt, it fused.  But I have had severe shoulder pain, shoulder blade area pain, incision pain, clicking, and headaches.

I do not know the answer.  My three surgeries were in two different states, two different doctors, spanning 8 years.  I really did like my last surgeon in NYC, and do feel he advised me down the best path he knew.  But I really do not know if the damage was already done from the prior two.  I still have herniated disks now in the middle of my back, but he does not want to operate on me.  Once you have multiples, you are not a good candidate for further levels.  They simply weaken and weaken.  

Has anyone heard of discoveries of the products being deffective or this material that is like a concrete causing issues with tissue and throat?

Best wishes and prayers to everyone.  I trully feel your pain.
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Like many of you, I had acdf surgery on C4-5, C5-6 last year due to cervical stenosis, ruptured discs and compression of spinal cord.  Before the surgery I had suffered with the the following:  Numbness, tingling, neck, shoulder and upper back pain, loss of bladder control.  I had migraines that seemed to develop more from muscles spasms, etc. after the mildest of activities.  About a year and half before my surgery,  I developed a "hump" on the back of back of my neck that causes me severe pain and numbness/tingling.  Lifting, reaching, bending, pushing, pulling, knealing, excessived standing, walking, sitting, etc... along with mild activity also causes this hump on my neck to get larger.  Imagine a large grapefruit cut in half and placed on the back of your neck....thats my hump size. The doctors (neuros) say that it's just a mass, nothing cancerous and it shouldn't cause pain.  The docs don't know why the mass (hump) gets larger but with rest and a reclining position...it will  eventually go back down to a smaller size.  Honestly, they don't seem to care.  So I had my surgery and right away I noticed that it helped with my bladder control issues and also the numbness and tingling down my arms, hands and legs had decreased.  After a few months, it has gradually returned  and I continue to have the pain in my neck and shoulder blade area.  I started having pain and pressure, numbness and tingling going down the middle of my back as well as around the hump area.  My neuro surgeon said everything looked good on xrays and that I should give it a few months.  It still hasn't gotten better, its now worse than before the surgery.  2nd Opinion, Mayo, I had to go to a series of doctors...with each one commentiong on the CT scan that I had done there.  I was told that my surgery was a failure by the pain, rheumy and neuro doc.  I requested a copy of the report to see for myself what the findings from the radiolgist were.  Mayo wanted me to make an appt with a neuro-surgeon there...and he asked a lot of questions about what my previous doctor said about xrays after surgery and if I had seen him recently.  He then tells me that he isn't sure why but the radiologist was mistaken about CT scan...that my surgery was a successful fusion.  Still have stenosis but from his view...everything looks good from a surgical standpoint.  My question is .... how could a radiologist have misread a CT scan that badly?  I am still in a lot of pain in my neck and shoulder blade area.    My activites are now limited dramatically because I know if I do most anything...I will suffer from it.  The headaches are unbearable and I have pain in my hands more than ever.  My back is in terrible shape...xrays revealed that I have stenosis and nerve impingement in thoracic and lumbar spine also.  I am a christian and believe that there is a purpose for everything and in God's healing power.  I just wonder what lesson I am suppose to be learning from all of this and how long this will last before I get some relief.  Sick and tired of being sick and tired.  Earline
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My mother had a C5 and C7 fusion, she is constantly in pain. Most of the pain  coming from her arms, shoulder, b/w shoulder blades, back of head, and neck. Please, I'm begging you, does anyone have any ideas on what to do, even just some advice, I'd really appreciate it.
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i do im so misarable its taking a toll on me the pain is  un real  i hurt worse before i had the surgery i had 7 plates and screws a 5 bone s replaced  my hands go numb  feel like fire in them i cant sleep in the hot tub  all i do is cry  im so depressed i dont know at to do  the pain meds dont help  steroids  dont either   i need pain manange ment he want do it  trying to ween me off he cant
thanks sue
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I am so glad I found this site.  I have been having pain in my neck and at a disc in my upper back.  I am not allowing anyone to touch me.  I will deal with it.  It's not as bad as what I am reading here!  My brother had back surgery as did my father and they are both in worse pain now than they were.  I just had a friend to had a second neck surgery.  The first involved a plate as well.  She had pain before, but, not to the extent she has now.  She says she just wants to die it hurts so bad.  I'll use natural approaches and will try zyflamend before I let anyone cut me open!  I will hold all of you suffering in pain in my prayers!
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BEEN PHYSICALY DISABLED SINCE TRAMATIC BRAIN INJURY IN 1977 --  BIG DEAL SURVIVING.  WALKING BALANCED IMPROVED GREATLY --  BUT STILL NOT WALKING INDEPENDENTLY.

MUCH DIFFIERENT THAN YOUR PHYSICAL LIMITATIONS, JUST THOUGHT OF SUGGESTING HOW I HAD LEARNED FROM MY PT THERIPIST OF USING MOIST HEAT HEALS JOINT PAIN BEST.  I HAD USED A LIKE SANDBAG THING YOU HEAT IN BOILING WATER........YOU MUST ASK YOUR PHARMATIST TO ORDER CALLED A "HYDROCULATOR".  NEXT:  IT MOST BE WRAPPED INSIDE A BATH TOWEL BEFORE PLACING ONTO YOUR SKIN.

MY THERAPIST RECOMMENDED HOLDING ONTO YOUR SORE NECK OR IN MY CASE MY SORE ANKLE (OR ANY SORE JOINT MUSCLES) FOR 20 MINUTES.  AND TO IMMEDIATELY HOLD COLD PACK ONTO THE SAME AREA.  **** til pain is better or gone) ******** # of repeated DAYS & times, depends on the needs of serverity!!  HOPE ITS A THOUGHT ya never know till tried........as always!!!

YES.......FELT AS IF YOU PULLED THE SORENESS OUT RIGHT AWAY!!  -----  JUST TELLING THAT THOUGH, HOWEVER MANY OTHER TIMES I ALSO HAD DONE THIS FOR A STIFF NECK -----  WHICH ALSO ELIVIATED THE PAIN IN MY STIFF NECK -----  IT MAY HELP YOUR PAIN IF NEVER TRIED I WONDERED!!!  LIKE YOU HOPE SO.......NO DOUBTS!!
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I had c3,4 ,5,6 done Dec of 2011  they used my hip bone for the neck  I can't move my neck  still have hip pain all the pain is back sorry I ever did it in the frist place. I can't do any thing so much pain .
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I had to get glasses after my fusion...I had some weird eye issues for about a year and a half.  it has been two years for my fusion c5/c6
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I had this same surgery a year ago, I am discovering this same thing. My shoulders and right arm are the worst areas of pain. I agree with you, toning and strengthening the muscles is the best option. I've had some good results with a process called "dry needling" as it serves to release muscle tension.
I am having a 3 level lumbar disc fusion and correction of a curved spine in about 3 weeks. My back pain is unbearable.
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I had fusion of C5-6,with bone plate and bone,screws. It has been over 12 years,and I suffer constant agonizing pain,in my neck and down the rt. arm and shoulder. My discs were compressing my blood supply to my rt. arm or I would not have done it. I would NEVER do it again. they say now I need fusion on the discs above and below the first fusion!! I do not think so!! Never again. I am not interested in being wheel chair bound.
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I am just done with surgery for 13 days back. It is c5-6. Yes I had for 10 years back a first surgery of c6-7. Before I got op my surgeon told me which is a normal thing. What is happened with me newly after 10 years is a great that took a decade. My fusion is done with carbon pack without any screw and metal. I am a violinist and for a years back I was suffering by same symptoms and getting worst playing and working on pc. So I hope it will better. Post surgery phase is also not pleasant but if you don't have any other option you have to accept the way of cure.
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I had cervical spinal fusion in 2010 and researched and got the best Doctor!!! I did everything I was supposed to do and I have no problems, except the severe nerve pain that was already there before the surgery. I had to have it done caused my discs were already bad and then got in a car accident and it bruised my spinal cord so if I would have fallen, I could have been paralyzed so I am very happy with the outcome. I did not even need pain meds after my surgery C5 and C6 with a cadaver bone and a plate and 4 screws.....I wish the nerve damage would have went away, but at least I am not paralyzed....happy for that...:)
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I had Surgery on C5/C6 in 2001 after a car accident. Metal plate and 4 screws and bone from my hip. The pain is now worse than the day it happened. Above and below are now wearing but the surgeon will not do more surgery until I am 60... 8 more years... I am on Morphine Patches and Panadine Fotre and Gabapentin and Voltaren... Still VERY painful... Rules my life.
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I just had a John Hopkins Dr Dean do surgery I had 567 fused I am hurting so bad I just gad done on the 7th holy crap all this does sound so good I am an over the road truck driver
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I was in a car accident in June of this year... I have herniated/ruptured discs at C5-6 and C6-7, my doctor told me surgery was the only option... I went through physical therapy and an injection into my disc spaces... 1.  I will not let anyone operate on my freaking neck, 2. I will never get one of those dumb *** injections again, waster of money and did nothing for me.  The best thing I have found is strengthening my neck muscles and resting my head when I need to.  My neck gets "tired" and I have to rest my head by the end of the day.  I have numbness, tingling and burning sensations down my left side through my shoulder, down my arm and into my finger tips... starting to get it on the right side... I would rather live with this than let some butcher cut me open and make it worse... no freaking way!!!!!
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I have had numerous surgeries on my lower back and neck. This is very common. Especially if you have the deteriorating disc disorder. I have a fusion on the C2 & C3 and within two years the symptoms that I had pre-surgery came back. This is due to the discs just deteriorating and the next vertebrae  starts rubbing on the next vertebrae. it gives a grinding sound and sometimes it gets stuck where I have to take both of my hands and jerk my skull the opposite way of it being stuck, just to get it back to functioning. What is really intolerable is the headaches that feel like lightning bolts running from my neck to the front of my skull. It even shoots like lightning bolts to the back of my eyeball. Nothing like a migraine in the eyeball. It's a form of torture. I ask God what the heck did I do to deserve this kind of abuse, there must be a reason because it has disabled me and the S.S.D.I. doesn't believe that I can have this much pain at the ripe old age of 51.  I've been getting treatments for my spine since 1995 and I've paid for a couple of summer homes for the doctor's treating me. I'm too young to feel like I'm 85. Anyway, hang in there and have the doctor take a look at it and get yourself an M.R.I. to get some answers to your questions. If you wait too long it's going to make it worse. It's amazing all of the new techniques that they HAVE NOW. If and when you do have to get cut open, have a neurosurgeon do it. The spine is their specialty so have one of them do it. Mine is a great doctor and seems like a very nice, genuine person outside of the doctor's office. Good luck to you. The symptoms you have, I had the same thing happen and it became inevitable to get cut open and I've had 3 fusions in my neck, and 4 fusion's in my Lumbar area. They're all going (my discs) so that they will meet it the middle of my back and then I won't be able to move once they get them all taken care of. What are they gonna be able to do for me after that??
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Hi my name is Cassie. My fiancee Mark was just diagnoised with a Frature between c2and c7. The worst being c5 through 7. The doctor said he will be needing surgery. I have no idea what this intails. Can someone please let me know what to expect with the surgery. He ia taking the news pretty hard. I would love to hear from someone. He was diagnoised on october 29 2013... thanks. ...
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Hi, I have had two neck surgery's and still have pain, in fact it is worse. neck, hand, underarm, arm pain is intolerable. In pain management now, nothing they can do. Just have to live with it. It is terrible.
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I just happen to stumble across this site as I was looking for exercises I could do for muscle strengthening a little over one year post op.  I had a cervical fusion at levels 4-5-6 in October of 2012.  Don't know what caused my damage but at the time of my surgery I was having severe muscle spasms in my left arm and hand, numbness and tingling in both upper extremities, barely no rotation in my neck, and the pain during minimal exercise was unbearable.  I really had no choice at the time it was either pain management or surgery.  The option of injections or other conservative treatment was not even discussed because my situation was just that bad.  I opted for the fusion using donor tissue and the bone stimulator and I have had great success.  My only problem is slight left shoulder pain which should diminish with strengthening exercises.  So, to everyone out there experiencing issues, pain, problems, etc., I wish you good luck in trying to get some resolution.  
Ceefairy
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7480140 tn?1391181694
I have had three neck surgeries in the last for years. I have had c2-c7 fused together.  He is looking at a rough road ahead and honestly the is a good chance that he will still be in a lot of pain even after the surgery.  I still have the numbness, tingling, and burning sensation down my left arm and also still have migraines but will have to say they are not as often as before the surgeries.  I wish him luck and hope its a success.
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7480140 tn?1391181694
Hi, just want to say I hate there are so many people in pain with neck problems, however its nice to know I am not alone.  No one around me has neck problems so they dont understand.  I am fairly young..low. But I have had three neck surgeries in the past four years...I now am fused from c2 - c7. Thw pain gwt s better for a little while then it starts again.  I am like the most of you on the pain meds, muscle relaxers, and migraine meds. Bit again its not even been a year since my last surgery and its all starting again.  Can't sleep because of numbness, tingling, and burning down my left arm.  If I actually do to much down with migraine for days.  I know I need to go to doc but honestly I am scared to I mean what else could be wrong there is nothing else to fuse and been told that all fusions took.  I am like most of you just looming for some relief but sure nice to find people who understand when I say !y head is heavy.
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Hey, I really would like someone who understands what I am going through to message me.  I think it would help, no one in my life understands and its hard to keep my spirits up at times.  I feel like I am fighting a loosing battle.  Since my first neck fusion in 09' it has been hard and have had two more surgeries since.  Now I have c2-c7 fused and in pain all the time. Anyway sure could use a friend...thanks.
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thats right i also am having alot of pain in my neck from c5 and c6 surgury
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It is great to hear someone is having such sucess! I'm glad you are doing so well.  

For me, I have had severe migraines since 3 yrs old and finally diagnosed at 40!with Chiari, which I had surgery to fix (no disrespect to anyone else, but I was in and out of hospital in less than 48 hrs and back to work in 5 days). I had C1 removed, 1/2 of c2 and decompression. Supposed to be in NICU for 4 days, but I did so well I came home early. Headaches and cerebral hypertension, seizures, etc, Gone! Then exactly 365 days later, girl funs red light and we hit her. Even with seat belt head snapped forward. Headaches returned two fold! So, C3-C4 fusion in Nov. still not a big deal for me at that time, but headaches continued and bulging discs at other discs. 3/17/14 this year had C5-C7 plating, discectomy, fusion (now about 7 weeks later).

Of all of the surgeries I have had and migraines (broke my nose and reset it myself in 1999, so I don't consider myself super sensitive to pain), this surgery has by far been the most painful and hardest to recover from. I work part time from home for an hour or 2, but that exhausts me. Neck spasms are so bad I have stood in hot shower and cried, which is NOT usual for me. Doc says everything ok, just multi level is more difficult, but I wanted to see if anyone else has had this much pain. I am still taking pain meds, but try to save for night so I can sleep, (NEVER taken pain meds for more than 1 day in my life) I walk everyday, have followed docs orders to T and still cannot hardly move.  Last appt, he thinks I will be out of work at least part time for 18 weeks or more!  Jeez. Not released to drive yet, and still and hard collar during day and soft at night.  

Am I crazy? Am I just being a cry baby? Holy cow but this hurts!  Oh, and am 49, but zero health problems and non smoker. Only good news has been I have only had 2 migraines in 7 weeks, which was one if main reasons for surgery.

Any suggestions? Does it get better? Thanks for letting me vent!
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Hey, you're the first person that I've heard of who also has eye issues. My eyes deteriorated really fast after three level fusion (C7-C3), but I still can get by with strong drugstore glasses. The thing is, that my eyes change from day to day. It seems to depend on what I have had to turn, twist or pull on, resulting in some of the non-fused vertebrae shifting. Sometimes my vision is very blurry, but might change later in the day. I read about a kid who actually became blind at one point, but with an adjustment to his spine his vision returned. Could be bunk, or phony promotion for Chiropractors, but I tend to believe it because of the situation with my own vision. All of the doctors who I was brave enough to tell about this, didn't seem to believe a word that I said!! My neck is fused so far back in a curve that to stand upright like I used to I would be looking towards the sky. The fusion wasn't even necesary, as the real problem was slipping at the level just below the three level fusion.Ego made the surgeon do the deed. He killed me, I'm just not dead yet. I can only sleep a few hours a night at the most, and the deterioration from this and constant pain from the crummy position of my neck, has worn me out and turned this VERY healthy person (except for slipping at T1-C7) into a miserable person with constant, new little health problems that stack up added to the neck and make life tough to want to continue with sometimes.
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7721494 tn?1431631564
Anatomically, the optic nerve is nowhere near the spine, which makes it difficult to correlate your spinal fusion with vision changes.

My vision began to fail in my late 30s from presbyopia and I began to required correction about age 40.

Could this be what's going on with you?

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Why are doctors allowed to continue this butchery??? They have accurate ways to measure knees for personal fit replacements, they have 3D programs to view the heart ect. Why isn't there any computer program to accurately measure a persons cervical spine before they are allowed to hack away on us and ruin our lives? These doctors can be callous people who have cheated on exams, done date rape, made fun of people and bodies as they progress through the medical system. When they are finally established they are exclusive except to their peers. They stroke each others egos at conventions and in published articles, while we are cast aside and left to die or live in misery, after the insurance money is collected. Am I not correct about this? Really I am the walking dead thanks to my incompetent, greedy, egotistical, lying  surgeon.
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Awesome! Thank you so much for the positive out look. I as well went down in the canyons 3 years ago with major injuries as well as a fusion on c6 & c7!  I refused to give up and be a slave to pain pill! I got back on my bike kawi zx6r and love to ride!  You find a way to deal with the pain and keep moving!  Just rode the waves on my boogie board for the first time in 3 years it was awesome.  Going to learn hiw to surf this summer as well. Looking forward to ski in the winter and msbye learning to snow board as well. Btw in 47 and plan in living the rest of what time I have left doing whst I love to do having fun .
thank you again you are awesome take care :))
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Yep the positive out look is good. I can't do many of the things that I used to do, ski, ride horses, a bike yes but really risky because of post fusion balance issues. My problem is that the three level fusion surgery was done on a part of my neck that didn't really need it, and would have been better served with a flexible artificial disc at the level below the fusion. However the fusion that was done is way too curved, and is a standard for that surgery. It is a 20 to 30 degree curve, or in my case an angle from the angle of the screws that are in my neck.. There is a 20 to 30 degree curve in a penny, but who would want their neck forced into such a tight curve? What I hope that people are warned about is accepting this generic standard for treating neck pain that is not helped with physical therapy or drug treatments. I don;t take ANY pain meds, because I can't stand living in some foggy altered state and with no real help for pain, because the cause of the pain is the permanence of the acute fusion. Does everyone have a size 7M foot? How would you like to wear the wrong size shoe for the rest of your life? That would eventually effect almost everything else about your health. from the pain, sleeplessness, worry and general taking away the pleasure of life from the effects of it. What the problem seems to be is that the treatment for compressed discs, neck pain and so forth is not further along in it's accuracy, experience, or outcome related information. More people have cancer and heart problems than neck problems, so I would assume that studying neck problems doesn't get as much funding or attention. What I said above still holds true, the surgeon did ruin my life, I could no longer work -the reason, mostly that I went for the surgery; was told- " I can fix that.", so that I could go back to work, lost my truck, my car, my income, my money my husband, the house that I lived in and in many cases my credibility, because I looked just fine, like a big, healthy bruiser in fact, so hardly anyone that saw me really believes that there is anything much wrong with me; I'm a whiner, a complainer and lazy. I say to myself-"You try living with 24 hr a day pain, 2 to 5 hours of sleep a night for five tears, living on a tiny income and losing every normal part of life that you had built over most of a life time." Even my siblings don't get it. I rarely talk about this to anyone, because who wants to hear it? I'm just hoping that anyone else that has neck pain, gets a second and third opinion, and goes to a surgeon in a populated area, so has lots of experience and doesn't just do a generic fusion on your neck! I can still walk almost anywhere, and have been a painting fool, so yes I have taken some of my life back and get pleasure from a few things. Chocolate.
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Wondering how you are doing had tri level fusion in 2012 of May Ben a nightmare since
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Hi my name is Vicky,I had my surgery on 08/11/2014 for yhe c5 &6 i had alot before my surgery it was hard for me to look down,when I would pick my head up it would feel like a load and my eft arm would hurt so bad that I could not pick it up.
well after surgery I had a hard time swallowing but after a week I was fine.I did not have to use a neck brace. the nurse just told me to move my neck slowly to the left and to the right and pivk my arms up .so thats what I have ben doing but I still have pain on my left shoulder  going down a little to my arm and I cant sleep sometimes on my left side.I will be calling my doctor for this but in the mean time I feel ok but I am never going to go thur this again.I am taking tylenol extra stregth for now
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I live in Australia if had a fusion in lower back in 2000 the doctor said he was not operate on my neck untill I lost the use in my left arm the operation on my back worked but my neck is giving me a lot of pain now last week I got a cp scan the family doc said me neck is really bad not to have an op and if eny one say they can fix it run a mile as I hade a fusion on my lower back worked it like being between a rock and a hard place I don't no what to do I know the desicion is mine but it the hardest desicion I've ever made when the pain get to a level 12 out of 10 I want to operate when it esas I don't want to trevor
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I had surgery 9/25/2014 on c4,5,6 since my neck is always uncomfortable and I also experience the numbness down to my toes the doctor told me it has nothing to do with the surgery and my eyesight has been affected also I feel like i struggle to see frequently. Glad to hear Im not the only one!
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I have been having neck and shoulder pain for about 10 years and i'm no better. do you think you can help?
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I don't get it. I have mentioned the vision problem that I have since the surgery too. I get that answer, also. "It has nothing to do with the surgery", yeh, right. I'm sure that it has everything to do with the surgery, since there was no blurry-changing eyesight before the surgery, but the're right and I'm not! It's slow going on improvements to cervical fusion. They are figuring out ways to use artificial discs on people who's fusions didn't take, but those of us who's fusion did fuse, we have to wait in our stiff unnatural positions, until the technology catches up. Try and exercise a lot and stay healthy so you'll still be around for the future help???
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I'm so sorry for everyone in pain from all this bone bank replacements/fusions as I am a victim of the same thing, a donor vertebrae, in my neck plus two of my own fused together. My surgery was in 1991 and was told it would need replaced in 10 years, it is now 2015  I have had the severe pain down my shoulder and arm starting in 2014, now my neck has been giving me the "up all hours of the night" with horrible pain again like in 1991 before the surgery only now I hear a grinding sound when I turn my head at times. I'm concerned there may be more damage now then before, not sure what to do.
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I had a fusion in 2012. I have severe pain in the back of my neck, a burning and tingling sensation up and down my left arm. The pain between my shoulders is unbearable. Not to mention the migraines and jaw pain too. I thought the grinding sound when moving my neck was my imagination until I read your post tonight. I take MS Contin and Lyrical for pain. It works for awhile then the cycle starts over again.
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14732384 tn?1436198015
Hi treva,I know this post is old but i as wondering about your outcome.I had c-5 c-6 done as well done 3/26/15 and i still hurt and burn in my upper back and arms and now up my neck,So im back on pain meds and doctor has given me a fibromyalgia diagnosis. Hope things work out well for you and this msg finds you pain free.
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I COULD HAVE WRITTEN ALL OF THESE, it's been 10yrs since what was supposed to be and actually says it is on post op MRI, l3-l5, when my latest report shows that only l4-l5 are fused, I WENT TO NANCY EPSTEIN IN LI NY, my first visit after surgery I walked out of her office and the manager took me in the back said they don't take my plan anymore, so bye, gave me no plan NOTHING, IT IS THE WORST MISTAKE YOU WILL MAKE I WAS PITCHED I WOULD HAVE TO ADJUST MY LIFE A LITTLE, now I have no life, just pain pills depression anxiety and a bad back Mack hips stomach eyes, THE SURGERY STOLE MY LIFE AT 35yrs OLD, DONT DO IT!
Anyone know of support groups, I cut everyone off because I don't want to bother friend & family, if you do it would be a life saver, thx
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You might want to see a neurologist to rule out some other problem. Don't want to scare you, but MS can do that. I have three people in my family, some related by marriage, who have it and it's different for all of them. Most people can get on meds and do okay, they can still get around and work, etc. Worst part is the fatigue in a lot of cases. Your neck can cause shoulder arm head and neck pain or tingling in arms. Legs, feet, vision sounds like something else.
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You might want to see a neurologist to rule out some other problem. Don't want to scare you, but MS can do that. I have three people in my family, some related by marriage, who have it and it's different for all of them. Most people can get on meds and do okay, they can still get around and work, etc. Worst part is the fatigue in a lot of cases. Your neck can cause shoulder arm head and neck pain or tingling in arms. Legs, feet, vision sounds like something else.
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Amen, I hear that!!!
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I have read almost every blog on this sight from 2013. What I am hearing is that neck fusion is not a viable solution to herniated disc for C5-C6 area. So my question then would be, should you just live with the pain in your neck, arm and hands with minimal opiates (tylenol only)? I've been to two neurosurgeons. They both consider fusion as the option for me (ruptured disc in C5-C6). In wreck in 2011. Now, its 2015 and getting burning pain in left arm and have had pain in my neck previously. Still have mobility in my neck. Is there anyone that has had a positive experience with neck fusion??? I'm seeing no benefits to this on this site.
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Over 20 years of cervical issues.  Fell in the military, left untreated for six years.  When fusion surgery done, had a 90% compression of cord.  Post surgery was like a switch flipping... no pain, headaches, arm tingling, dizziness, shortness of breath, blurry vision, etc... etc... as I suffered many others.  About 8 years passed and I started to feel the same as I did in 1992.  Went to Neuro, conservative treatment... (believe this is the wrong course of treatment in most cases once a herniation is found).  Waited 2 years for 2nd fusion C5/6 after dealing with increasing issues and loss of feeling in my right thumb and right arm/hand swelling.  Post surgery, NO CHANGE or relief.  Filed for SS, fought with Neuro for corrective action, told to "learn to deal with it", eyesight changes due to age, pain meds don't work, etc..  Gave up in 2010 after denial and retreated to conservative treatment, PT, Isometrics, self limited my activities.  Needless to say, now 5 years later everything is worse.  Grinding, headaches, numbness, memory, thoughts, etc...  In May 2015 confirmed C5/6 Fusion failed, bone bank chip riding my spinal cord, artifacts all around area, ostephytes at nearly every level, clefts at several levels, though I am not a candidate for surgery.  Have been unemployed/self employed as I need to rest every few hours or so.  Any heavy exertion requires me to sleep.  If my neck pops, electrical shocks down my back and legs, toss and turn through the night due to neck pain, arms going "dead" etc...

Seeking legal representation, but most say I have no case, though I have metal hardware with only 3 screws confirmed failure this year, and now the office colleague of my past neurosurgeon telling me I am not a candidate for corrective surgery???  

Complication is my heart rate and pressure routinely spike, respiration rate is low to near 10 per minute waking me at night, headaches are non stop, ear aches daily, pain non relenting, and I feel as though I will not wake one day or move the wrong way and become paralyzed or dead.

Thus, if you have any grinding or popping at your fusion level, chances are it FAILED and you should not wait.  Go to another office and get a CAT w/myelograph or MRI.  If it failed, it needs to be taken care of and the lack of care by your previous Neuro can be addressed in court for malpractice.

From all my research and investigations, THEY are not monitored and use unnecessary X-rays to say everything is OK and secure.  Only the CAT or MRI will show the damage.  My past did a swimmer's X-ray at the last to tell me everything was fine and in place.  NO detail, or ability to see the fusion actually failed, but I now read X-rays and saw the "darkening" line where the fusion was failing.

Best to all, and do not "Learn to live with it" as you give away the life you could have had.  I did not play baseball or football with my kids after 2006.  Stopped going to amusement parks, don't lift my grand children up, all because of the pain and fear I have.  And I continue to give up more things I use to do because I can't or fear the possible outcome.
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Wow I came here expecting answers and seems to be none. I like everyone else here had same cervical fusion surgery, had same reaction by the doctor that did it and 1 year later still having so much pain as described by all of you. I have a wife, 8 kids and that's the only thing holding me onto life cause at times I can't handle it. Meds work ok for about 1 hour and then it's just coping with the pain. I went to another doctor and I've had several procedures including burning the nerves on my neck and shoulders on each side and still no releif.  Last week this doctor referred my to another specialist in Emory Hospital as I believe he ran out of options.  On top of this message and my family are trying to survive the bills to run a home, doctor bills cause insurance *****, and because I've been denied disability twice now my wife works 2 jobs and we are still behind . Please if anyone has answers please, please help. I just feel at times I don't need to be here and maybe my family can use my insurance money to survive the financial situation I've put them in. I'm not suicidal nor depressed as it may sound , but if you are not going through this you won't understand.  I was anot active person who provided for my family and on daysome off I spend time with the family and always looked for a reason to update my home. I can't even play or pick up my kids like I used to and my 6 year old daughter ask if I will ever get better and better able to pick her up like I used to. With this said anyone reading this and I'd thinking of doing this type of surgery just forget it and try other options if you can. I poor my life out there to see if anyone has answers.  
Rafael Rodriguez
***@****
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Sorry for the typo as I'm using a phone and it just types what ever it wants to and there's no edit on this site. Ok so where it says message it's mess me and my family.  Then it bleaped  insurance s. U c. K  s. Then instead of it was anot is I was always an active person who provided for my family and on days off I looked for a reason to update my home.
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Hello People: First i would like to say that i feel very sad to here about all the pain you good people are in and also i wish things had turned out better. It seems to me about 95% of these C/5, C/6 surgeries only cause more problems. I too am scheduled to have surgery on my C/5, C/6 in 2 weeks and after reading these posts i am ready to run out of state!!!!! weeks of PT and pain management has helped me some but i have the pain and numbness on my right right side on and off.  It is very bad on cold days. I really will have to put more thought into this surgery because i have already been out of work for four month's and some of you people never make it back!!! I am so confused right now? Any advice would be appreciated.
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I have no clue I've had two ACDF C5-6 surgeries in the past two years. Live on pain meds for life I suppose :-(
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I feel all your pain, I also had c-4-5-6-7 fused with no results to the pain numbness tingling. I cried reading all these post. My Dr. Told me see a pain management Dr n could care less he made his money.
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My Dr. Roger they said all lies like if I got stopped by police n they gave sobriety test ID fail the nurse said my BP was so high cause I was in pain, my GP said that was crazy. I should have gotten a lawyer but then they say you consented to the surgery! Sol!
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I had c3,c4,c5,c6,c7 actually 3 levels a plate and 8 screws. I live in North Carolina. I had my surgery 16 months ago, I had very little pain after the surgery and minimal since. I'm a Christian and my doctor was a Christian he prayed with me before surgery, I've seen him once after the surgery. I'm not 100% better but I would do it all over again.  
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I ruptured the disc at C5-C6 and had a successful fusion in 2011. Six months later, I was rear ended in a car accident and had t have the adjacent segment fused (C6-C7). I felt  better for a short time after my second fusion but them went downhill. I went back to the surgeon and found out that both of my fusions had failed and I needed a corpectomy of C6 and fusion of C5-C7. I had the surgery in May of 2013 and again, I began feeling better and then it went downhill. This time, I could barely swallow or speak. Went back to the surgeon to find out that I had a hardware failure (4 screws and plate) and that the plate was kicked away from my spine over a centimeter. Went back in for surgery in November of 2013 for a hardware revision. Since then, I have been in horrible pain that begins at the base of my neck and radiates out and down my arms. I have chronic migraines now and don't have one minute where I am without pain. I have tried massage, acupuncture, epidurals, branch blocks, Botox, 100's of sessions of PT, and even nerve cauterization with no relief. I see a pain management doctor that loads me up on pain meds that I can't take because they make me feel sick. Four surgeries in two years and 15 surgical procedures and I am no better than when I started. I lost my job due to having to take a leave of absence and not knowing when I could return. My friends and family are so tired of me and this situation, and I don't blame them. I just had a CT scan with myelogram and hoping for some answers. I have lost three years of my life and feel hopeless that this is how it is going to be forever. Pursued getting a spinal cord stimulator but was told I wasn't a candidate due to the epicenter of my pain being at the base of my spine. Not sure where to go from here...
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