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After spending some time reading about Anterior Cervical Sugery Posts, Im concerned that I will feel worse instead of better if I move forward with the surgery on April 9th.. Right now I'm funtional except for pain while sleeping in my right arm and my right arm's strength is probably 30% weaker than it should be. My MRI shows that I have a large disk herniation between C-6 and C-6. I'm in the process of getting a second Neurosurgeon opinion. This surgery scares the daylights out of me! Any suggestions out there??

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Don't be scared of the anterior surgery. I had the exact same symptoms as you (I'm 29 male) a herniated disc at C6-7, with tricep weakness in my right arm only. Fortunately the MRI showed that the disc could be taken out through the back or atleast the portion that was pinching the nerve. Based on what I've ready 95% of the surgeries are done through the neck which is less painful but if you are getting the fusion done it will be a long (6 months to a year) recovery period. I spoke with an orthopedic surgeon in Louisville and he said my spine if I had this done would be as strong as every, slightly less mobility where it is fused but nothing else. It is morbid to think of someone cutting the front of your neck but it is the preferred choice by neurosurgeons in most cases.
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I have put off the April 9th sugery to allow more time to review my options. I met with my family MD this week to discuss and she said that this was my only option and the longer I wait, the more permanent the damage could be. UGG! I was hoping for some other suggestions like PT etc... SO I have a 2nd opinion with another Neurosugeon in the morning. Although I expect to hear the same thing. How do you decide on the right Surgeon? And do you think I will be able to go back to work by 6 weeks? I work out of my home office and I'm in Field Sales so I need to do some driving as well.
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Hi,

I am currently in the same boat you were in back in April. My doctor is recommending I take part in a clinical trial where I would potentially have the discs located between c5, c6, and c7 replaced with a new type of artificial disc. Check out this site www.secondgenerationdisc.com. The other option is Cervical Disectomy with a fusion of the three vertebrae.

I am wondering if you proceded with your surgery and what the result was.
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