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I had extreme pain in my neck and the MRI revealed that discs C5-C6 and C6-C7 were putting pressure on my spinal colunm. The only way to get releif was surgery. I found a specalist and my fusion of C5-C6-C7 was successful. The new treatment is to go in through the front of your neck. I have a titanium plate and 6 screws stablizing the vertebrae until the fusion of bone to bone and metal is complete which could be about a year of healing. I have had an MRI every 2 months checking the progress. I still wear a neckbrace while in the car and at night. I have a 2" incision line still present, the scar will follow the wrinkle lines of my neck as I age. I am 52, female. The intense pain is gone. It was the best thing I ever did for myself.

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THIS RESPONSE IS TO A GUEST WHO WROTE ON 5/2/08- I HOPE YOU STILL FOLLOW!!! ....I have read a million of these medical blogs and never shared a simple fact or thought.  Mostly due to the overwhelming negativity, but when I saw yours, I had a strong urge to share with you.  I had a very similar surgery (C4-7 fused/titanium plate/6 screws) 18 THAT'S RIGHT, 18 years ago!! I am now a 52 year old female too and my surgery was, and still is, as successful as any that serious could be.  The advice I continually repeat, and firmly believe, is that 99% of the time, surgery should not be done for "pain" relief only.  There are sooooo many options and alternative methods for pain relief and should you ever wish to contact me, please feel free to email and the site will contact me as I've left my email address!  I wish you all the wellness possible and hope you are blessed with medical professionals, like me, who truly care and treat you as a special person, not just another patient.  
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