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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

6 Months Post Cervical Fusion - 1 bump in my neck, 1 in the road

Haven't posted much lately because I have nothing to complain about, well, at least not about my neck, heh.  I'm calling the recovery phase officially over since I'm about the same as I've been for a couple of months.  I'd call it a better than expected recovery but it is a slightly reduced mobility status quo which only very occasionally interferes with my getting a move on.

The best glass half full part is that my adapted work posture has made a big difference in how productive I am at work.  Moving around just a little helps keep me energized and focused: Previously when I sat all the time, I just stared out the window a lot on conference calls.  Now, I find myself multi-tasking and getting more accomplished.  If only cervical fusion somehow exempted me from conference calls altogether, that'd be something!

Bump in the road:  I took my first spin class post-surgery last week and was proud of myself for not having gotten so out of shape I couldn't do it.  Unfortunately, during the 12-minute climb (thanks, Kim at Gold's Gym!) I had a very short episode of pain in my bicep and forearm.  This was the same place I experienced pain pre-surgery so I backed off the intensity and it resolved.  No problems since then but this little bit gave me a nice small-scale reminder of how bad it was before. 

I have biked before this so I'm not sure if it was the intensity of the workout but I think it might have been related to my posture/clutching the handlebars ferociously.  I just got back from Arizona and did lots of high altitude hiking/walking with no issues so I say again, hey dummy, stick with that!

Closing in on the holiday home stretch which includes lots of travel and the usual frenzy of preparations.  Looking forward to a chance to relax away from the tinsel and turmoil!


Super B said...

Hi. Thanks so much for your blog. I referred to it for the first couple of weeks after my surgery and found it again. It is very comforting to have such detailed personal info from someone who has gone through the procedure. I'm 6 weeks post op 2 level acdf. I get my X-rays and surgeon follow up this week. I'm 45 year old lawyer. I injured myself training Brazilian jiu jitsu, a pretty rough form of martial art, I really love doing it though and hope I can get back. BTW, I've been pain free since my surgery, no pain meds needed. So far a relatively easy recovery. We're you required to do any physical therapy?

R Palmer said...

Glad you found it helpful, SB. Sounds like your recovery is going well! I never did any PT afterwards. My doc said normal activity, minus running, would gradually return my function and he was right. I'm still pain free, and full activity but for running, which I only miss a little now. A friend in S. Africa who had the same did get PT for quite a while-I gather treatment regimens differ there.

Good luck getting back to training, I know it feels like forever waiting. You in a brace still?

Super B said...

Brace for 6 weeks, ends tomorrow (I hope), but not for sleeping - not too bad. Following by 6 weeks of physical therapy, which I guess I'll start this week.

Are you not able to run? I actually thought that if I can't go back to contact sports I'd try triathalon.

R Palmer said...

I am physically able to run, and have for short distances, but my Doctor told me not to. It does bring on some very slight tingling in my hand so I'm not gonna push it. I'm concerned about adjacent levels so why risk it? Swimming, cycling work okay but I do miss the hard sweat from running. Getting the brace off was a good day, enjoy!

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Medical Details If You Must

Two-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion scheduled for May 29th. Herniated discs at C4-5 and C5-6 indenting the cord with significant kyphosis.

I am not a medical professional. The information contained in this blog is not intended to be nor is it medical advice. Nothing contained herein should be considered a substitute for consultation with a qualified health professional.