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Spinal Cord Disorders Message Board

Spinal Cord Disorders Board Index

C5 C6 Fusion
Oct 19, 2005
I have a question...
I was in a car accident on 9-15-2004 we were rear ended while stopped in traffic. I found out in Jan 05 that i have a c5-c6 disc problem. I have been thru physical therapy, epidural shots, steroid shots, trigger point shots, steriod pills. I have pretty much done it all, and i take alot of medicine also. I saw a neurosurgeon recently and he wanted to do traction and more phys. therapy, i did it for a while and it hurt more, so i decided i was going to get a second opinion. This doctor is supposed to be the best around the town im from. He said that my disc is ruptured and that im a great candidate for surgery, c5-c6 fusion, and that if i dont have the surgery the area will calcify, and will form a bone spur and i will be in much more pain than im in now. Im only 22. He said that is a great thing for me because im young and my body should heal very well. Now ive been reading all of these posts on here and the majority that ive read, some people get worse or no change, even after the surgery. Now there are a few on here that have had a great expierence with the surgery. I am a blackjack dealer and am constantly bending over a table dealing cards. he said that i will be off for 6wks-3 months. Has anyone else had this done, with positive results. I mainly have neck pain and headaches, some numbness and tingling, but thats very rarely. For the most part i have the neck pain and pain in my upper back. Im just not sure if it is worth having surgery, i know i can handle my pain now, and i was ready to settle my case, until he told me about the bone spur. I dont want to get worse, and he said if i wait too long then my body will get used to the pain, and even if he fixes it that my body will still produce the pain that im having. There are just so many risks with the surgery, im just not sure if its worth being in a worse condition, if anyone can help it would be much appreciated.
Re: C5 C6 Fusion
Oct 19, 2005
You also have to realize alot of people that get better leave the message board. Yes there are risks with having the surgery but there are risks not having it. I am going to be having C6-7 done soon and posibly C5-6 depending on the outcome of my mri. If they are herniated bad enough just another accident could cause major problems or paralysis. Surgery should be the last option but sometimes can't be avoided. Mine has know gotten to the point where I have spinal cord compression. I wish you luck in which ever way you choose.

Re: C5 C6 Fusion
Oct 19, 2005
Hi CS-----

Great question. Right now there is a thread on this site for folks who are post a year from surgery and how they are doing. Why don't you visit there and read some of the replies. It should give you honest first hand input.

Re: C5 C6 Fusion
Oct 21, 2005
hi cs
I agree with dootag. I was so glad that I found this site. I just had c5,6,7 with donor bone done at the end of Sept and am wearing a soft collar. I saw on my mri where the nerve was being pinched by the bulging disc. I sit at a computor 8 hrs a day doing customer service. I went thru the pt,shots, and even traction. And it did not help me at all but made it worse. I did alot of talking to people who had this type of surgery and yes some have bad results and some have good results but remember everyone is different and so will be the results. Make you a list of questions/concerns and ask the doctor.I will go back in 4 weeks for another check up. They told me that down time would be 6 weeks-3 months. I even asked him if I would be able to go white water rafting and he said yes. Keep us posted.
maw maw
Re: C5 C6 Fusion
Oct 22, 2005
Sounds like you have a herniation that is pressing on the nerves. My doctor told me that herniations will go away in about 2 years but a bone spur will not. It depends on how bad the never is being pinched. I had a C6/7 decompression surgery in 2003 due to major nerve compression. I think the physical therapy can sometimes make things worse as it always seemed to for me. In July 04 I was also rear ended and then I started having pains in August that got worse and worse. The Nov MRI then showed a herniation and large bone spur at C4/5 as well as a herniation C7/T1. The 4/5 is causing me a lot of pain and soon I will have it fused. Like Vernonika said not getting it done in some cases like hers and mine could cause permanent paraylsis. I already have permanent nerve damage from the original incident. A neurologist should know what he is talking about but seeking a second opinion is always great. Also my first doctor told me the disk above and below will weaken after surgery and in my case he was right as both above and below my neck are now damaged from a minor accident. You may qualify for a disk replacement at your age. I am not sure if they are doing cervical ones yet or not.

At your age you don't want to do something you can wait to do, however, with your job and all the standing and leaning over it my eventually be a neccesity. The upper back pain and neck pain do not go away. And pain pills do not heal bone. And with those dang headaches nothing works but time. A cervical headache is the worse and longest pain I have ever had.

Do not settle your case yet. You are not healed and the costs and the after affects of either surgery or waiting for it need to be covered by who hit you. If you decide to make sure all medical expenses are covered for life in regards to this. You should be covered for lost wages.

Good luck...
Re: C5 C6 Fusion
Oct 30, 2005
Well I saw the doc. and I will be having the surgery in the end of Nov. beginning of Dec. I should be getting the details on the exact date here soon. Hopefully i will be like some of these people who recover quickly, i cant really afford to be off work for too long. Is anyones injurys related to a car accident? and if so, did they get a proper settlement for their pain and troubles? I need the surgery but im just afraid im going to go down in flames in the process and get no compensation in the end. I hope not. Ive lost so much because of some girl who wasnt paying attention.

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