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I started experiencing tingling in my index and middle fingers on my left hand a few months ago. It soon progressed to pain shooting from my shoulder to my finger tips. My doctor did x-rays and said they didn't really show much so he scheduled me for physical therapy. The pain got progressively worse from the therapy so doc had me get an MRI. After seeing the results he told me that my C4, C5, and C6 discs were crushed. I can't think of anything that caused it but regardless my doctor said the only fix will be surgery. I have a consult scheduled for this coming Monday but was wondering if anyone else may have had any luck with any non-surgical methods like acupuncture or holistic medicine?

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My husband was in an automobile accident on 9/20 and the MRI done on 9/25 looks bleek, Official report will be available on 9/27 (today) but it appears multilvel disc buldging with frank herniation at C5-6. I expect that we will be told that surgery is the only option. Let me know what you find out and we will share our experiences as well. As a nurse, I am very nervous about letting that spinal cord stay compressed while more conservative therapies are tried.

Discs just do not spontaneously improve.

Good Luck!
My husband is almost 60, getting ready to retire, and has waited his whole life to play as much golf as the day allows. Whatever it takes, we will go through whatever it takes to make sure he can do that - or at least do that in a year.
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Thank you for your reply. My MRI results showed the C5 disk is about 1/4 of its normal thickness and compressing my spine considerably. I've checked into alternatives to surgery but they're all temporary solutions. I thought Spinal Decompression Therapy might be good based on things I read about it but found out that they have more success long term using it for lower back pain than they do for neck pain. I've been told that it helps for a few months and then you're back to where you were before and have to have it done again. It seems that surgery is the only real option I have for any kind of long term relief. I'm 51 and fairly healthy so I've been told that my recovery from surgery should go well.

The whole idea does concern me because I've been the sole bread winner in our family since my wife was diagnosed with MS and Fibromyalgia 9 years ago. My surgery is scheduled for 10/22/10. I'll try to let you know how it goes.

Good luck to you and your husband.
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I had surgery on C5 & C7], 18 months ago. [Pinched spinal cord due to stenosis] Not good results. I am worse than before. I URGE you to do two important things. 1 .Get at least a second, maybe a third opinion. 2. If you decide surgery is your only option, have surgery done at a hospital that is associated with a university. Good results are never a guarantee, but take all the steps until you are totally convinced you made the best possible choice .I had the surgery done to avoid or delay paralysis, but now I wish that I had obtained a second decision..I hope that a good outcome is in your future. Calebsarme.
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I work at a Scoliosis and Spine Center. It is always good to get a second opinion especially when it comes to spine surgery; and if you have a good doctor, they will urge you in that direction. I'll be honest, I have been here for 3 years and I have never heard of 3 discs being 'crushed' without a preticipating event or trauma; sounds a little off to me. You'll also know you have a good physician when they urge you to try every non-operative measure in order to avoid surgical intervention ( unless it is something that requires immediate surgical intervention.) Therapy, medication (eg. anti-inflam.'s), spinal injections (eg. epidurals, nerve root blocks), accupuncture, etc...are all things to try to avoid surgery. Please beware of physicians that 'jump to the knife' too quickly. Spine surgery is very lucrative and some doctor's are in it for the money.
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I had the surgery 5 weeks ago today. I was told that my C5 disk was so bad that it came out in pieces. i noticed an immediate improvement in my left shoulder and arm. The pain was gone from my arm and my strength was back also. I have some slight pain in my neck and some in my right shoulder that comes and goes but other than that, I'm doing very good.

I stopped wearing my Aspin collar after 4 weeks and I'm experiencing less pain every day. I consider myself very fortunate. My surgery was performed by one of the top surgeons from Froedtert hospital, an affiliate of the Medical College of Wisconsin and one of the top teaching hospitals for Nero surgery in the country. I hope and pray that my recovery continues to go as well as it has. I don't know if this is the right decision for everyone but at this point I feel that it was the the right one for me.

I hope this helps someone. God bless.
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I have spinal stenosis, and bulging discs and a pinched nerve. The disc dessication runs down my spine but is most prevalent in the C3-6 area. I have disc height loss at C3/4 and C5/6 and severe right neural foraminal narrowing. My neurosurgeon suggested an ADCF (anterior disectomy cervical fusion) to replace 3 levels with cadaver bone and place a metal cage in front for support. I really would rather have a less invasive procedure, even though they assured me this is "minimal".

I have been in pain for about a year and the right side is more affected. I am looking for a surgeon in the NJ/NY area. SOmeone recommended a place in Pittsburgh, but for after care needs I would rather be closer to home.

I also have MS and fibromyalgia, which are under control. Has anyone been helped by surgeons in the metro NY area?
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