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Spinal Cord Disorders Message Board

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Next week will mark 6 months after my ACDF C5-C6 w/hardware and I am not 100% but have logged another semester at the old College and have begun to resume some of my recreational activities. I still have significant numbness in my left hand, bottom of my left foot, chest cavity, and tips of my right fingers...I suffered severe cord compression and L'hermitte's sign, problems with my gait, a decimated right tri-cep...among other things...I started physical therapy back in September and that has helped more than anything...with respect to regaining my strength, my propreoception, and general confidence...I like the fact that she can measure in a quantitative improvement with regard to strength and sensation...both of which have improved...but not 100%...I have in fact played golf twice...although i was nervous that my head would fall off the first time second round I carded an 82...I have also played basketball a few times ( I know folks are kind of conflicted about that I figure if Mike Alstott can ram his head into the endzone for the Tampa Bay Bucanneers after the same surgery I should be able to run up and down the court with a bunch of middle-aged rec ballers)...I did end up going to a neurologist about a couple months ago...who told me just wait and see...encouraged me to go to rehab specialist...which I may try in the new year...The thing is...I am just saturated with doctors...and tired of telling the story...which i guess explains my absence here for the past couple of months...I feel as if I am always going to have some neurological issues...and so waiting for some kind of closure with respect to my injury is a pipe dream...There is definitely a before and after with this thing...And I feel like I just need to move on and live my life...recognizing my limitations but at the same time not resigning myself to the life of a spectator...I mean if I can go out and hit 5 of 7 3 pointers in the over 30 slowbreak basketball league...I feel like that is progress...granted I am sucking wind...and still feel slow and awkward...I know I will never go after the rebound and be as aggressive as I once was..but at least I can play...Anyway I would like to think I am a survivor of sorts...and now am learning to live in this ambiguous space between activity and recovery...Happy Holidays...peace...HTF
Hang in there - sounds like you are doing great but don't be surprised if you hit some more ups and downs before that one year mark!! (everytime I feel like I'm making significant progress something seems to happen)

Keep up a positive attidude and have a great holiday season.
Sounds great. your attitude rocks! I am just at 4 months post op, and I am darn near back 100%. I will be going skiing in January, with my NS blessing. I broke my neck skiing 7 years ago and was the contributing factor to bulging, and cord compression over the years.

If you fall off the horse, get back on it and kick it's ***.

Merry Xmas all.
I have read your posts with intense interest over this past week. First, congrats on your anniversary date. I celebrate your success and empathize with your ambivalence at the ongoing process of recovery. I am hoping you may be able to help me considering the uniqueness of your injury.
I am complicated. I am 6 months post op from a revision lumber fusion at L4-5 for spondy and with instrumentation. Recovery has been very rough. Developed a cervical issue and was diagnosed with a herniation at c5-6 in May '06. In March of '06 I had had a severe episode of pain, numbness of the left thumb and index finger, and neck stiffness. It got better on its own. Proceeded with lumbar surgery in June. In July I had a next episode of cervical pain and this time I was dropping things and my arms would fall asleep during the night. So, 2 epi's in Sept and late Oct that helped with most symptoms. I thought I had successfully back-burnered my cervical issue.
Mid-Sept enter vertigo! A spell of pretty typical vertigo that resolved in 3 days. Next episode is just a month later but it isn't typical. I have a strange sensation in my head that seems to be caused by head movement. I start to have mild nausea. This lasts for almost a month but it is so mild I try not to pay attention to it. About 10 days ago, the sensation starts to get more frequent and it is associated with me feeling off balance. I search and find L'Hermitte's Sign and your posts. But my sensation is different. The chin to chest movement doesn't cause my sensation which is more like an inner strobe without the light effect. But I am starting to wonder about that c5-6 herniation.
I see surgeon on Tuesday and have MRI same day - c5-6 spinal cord compression (on MRI) and abnormal finger reflexes are noted. Strobe/vertigo thing is getting much worse. Doc thinks the compression is cause but is going to send me to a neuro to be prudent.
I am home and can't drive. I am taking meclizine to prevent vomiting. I am just so surprised by all of this. And I can't seem to find any research/case studies to show cord compression does cause this type of symptom. I wondered if you, or anyone here, can confirm this link? I don't have L'Hermitte's Sign but what do I have? Thanks Suzy-Q

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