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  #1  
Old 11-17-2019, 04:43 PM
EmilyR EmilyR is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 1
Default Considering C5/C6 Mobi C

Hello all - thanks very much from contributing to this forum as it's very helpful for someone that is completely oblivious to spinal procedures.

I'm in Houston.

So nearly 5 weeks ago I started having weird pain in my left arm and shoulder (I now know what nerve pain feels like). I had some neck pain in the couple of weeks leading up to it but didn’t think anything of it/ thought I had strained my trapezius muscles or something during spinning class (top of my shoulders were super sore when I put my head down - felt like muscle pain but I now wonder if it’s this disc issue).

Arm and shoulder pain got progressively worse over about 4-5 days (so bad I contemplated going to ER over weekend, couldn’t sleep, Advil/Aleve did nothing, etc.) I also had major spasming/twitching muscles in the affected arm/shoulder for about 36 hours. Two days in I went to a barre class thinking it might help and ironically pain totally went away while exercising but I realized my left shoulder/arm is now weaker than the right.

That got my attention so I made a doc appt the following week with my normal doc even though pain was starting to get better. I also had a weird patch of skin on my left arm that felt super sensitive but went away after about 10 days.

Doc thought it was a herniated disc but was worried about weakness so ordered MRI of shoulder and neck for the following week. MRI confirmed herniated disc at C5/C6 level impacting my left C6 nerve root. The rest of the cervical spine is perfect. At that point I’m pretty much pain free, just have a quasi-gimpy arm (have full range of motion and can do normal activities, but not the strength on one side to pick up my 45 lb daughter). The weakness he felt warranted a check to neurosurgeon.

So went to two neurosurgeons. One is recommending artificial disc replacement (WTF?!) but made it sound like a breeze (45 min, no real side effects, etc.). Other one reserved judgement until after some PT and oral steroids.

I am totally confused/ shocked as I thought they would tell me that I’m obviously healing and it will be fine and motor nerves just need longer to recover but they weren’t so optimistic/ I am now concerned about potential for permanent nerve damage.

I’m completed course of steroids and have been doing traction to pull my head up/ reduce pressure on discs. One guy said PT/ other guy said just rest and no PT, so that’s confusing too. I have a follow up appt tomorrow and am afraid of going down the surgery route/ don't really feel any stronger in the last 10 days since first seeing surgeons. Just seems odd to consider surgery when at the moment, I feel completely normal/pain free except for the weakness.

I will keep the group posted. Appreciate any words of wisdom or advice!

Emily
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  #2  
Old 11-23-2019, 10:14 AM
JackBauer JackBauer is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 63
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Hey Emily.

Sorry you are going through this.

My journey started 7 years ago (approximately) with some lumbar herniations / bulging. It got somewhat better, but returned and even though the pain was not horrible, I could not see myself living with it forever. (In the end I delayed my lumbar surgery but just had two cervical ADR's implanted... Long story)

I found a YT video on the M6 and was intrigued. (I'd personally stay FAR away from that disc today) Then I found this site and slowly become comfortable with the idea of having surgery.

The problem for me was that the best disc out there, in mine and many others opinions are... The LP-ESP. Been in use in Europe for like 13 years, but not available in the USA yet due to the effort and cost associated with the FDA approval process.

Over time I realized that the benefits of the ESP - for something that will likely be in my body for 30-50 years... meant that a trip to Europe - he hassles of traveling and the extra cost... (as it's hard to get insurance coverage)... Well those costs and hassle (and I do not enjoy traveling) were totally insignificant compared to a 40+ year lifespan.

Plus surgeons in Europe literally have done THOUSANDS of these implantations compared to what most surgeons here in the US (using inferior discs) use.

So my thoughts for your situation are:

1) Consider traveling to Cologne, Germany... Barcelona, Spain... Zurich, or Dusseldorf... Getting what many consider to be the best technology in discs implanted by surgeons who have done thousands of them.

2) If you can delay it with other means (PT)... Then maybe in a few years the ESP discs are available in the USA and a bit more convenient.

There are surgeons in the US who have done a lot of ADR implantations - and some pretty highly respected... Like Texas Back Institute. And if the ESP was available in the USA, I certainly would have considered going to someone here.

But my judgement was the ESP was far and away the best, and was worth the extra effort and cost.

EDIT: I just re-read your comments and saw your point about muscle weakness. To me that suggests sooner rather than later intervention. I also wanted to recommend you join the FB ADR support group. There are people out there that will disagree with my advice; that other ADR models are "fine". Again for me it came down to this device being in me for a very long time... And I was also cognizant of the risk to adjacent discs if I used a device with fewer degrees of freedom.
__________________
L4-L5 Broad Diffuse Bulge, mildly contacting left L5 nerve root
L5-S1 Broad Central Disc Protrusion mildly impinging left S1 nerve root
"Mild scoliosis of lumbar spine". Does not feel mild to me.


C5-C6, C6-C7 bulging, bone spurs. Imaging not looking good.


Surgery scheduled with Dr. Desai in mid-late October.
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  #3  
Old 11-27-2019, 10:05 PM
Harrison's Avatar
Harrison Harrison is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 6,866
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Hi Emily,

Thanks for posting and sharing. Sorry about your situation, I hope we can help!

When you can, pls see:

https://www.adrsupport.org/forums/sh...ad.php?t=11053

Let me know if you need help!
__________________
"Harrison" - info (at) adrsupport.org
Fell on my ***winter 2003, Canceled fusion April 6 2004
Reborn June 25th, 2004, L5-S1 ADR Charite in Boston
Founder & moderator of ADRSupport - 2004
Founder Arthroplasty Patient Foundation a 501(c)(3) - 2006
Creator & producer, Why Am I Still Sick? - 2012
Donate www.arthropatient.org/about/donate
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  #4  
Old 11-27-2019, 10:08 PM
Harrison's Avatar
Harrison Harrison is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 6,866
Default

Jack offers some helpful advice, but I am not sure what he means about inferior disc types. I am 15 years post-op with a Charite disc. It has done me very well. Still others have done really well with the ProDisc, also long-term. Same it true for the Mobi C and L.

NSAIDs are important post-op for ANY cervical ADR patient. Search for heterotopic ossification, which I've expounded upon hundreds of times since 2004:

https://www.adrsupport.org/forums/search.php
__________________
"Harrison" - info (at) adrsupport.org
Fell on my ***winter 2003, Canceled fusion April 6 2004
Reborn June 25th, 2004, L5-S1 ADR Charite in Boston
Founder & moderator of ADRSupport - 2004
Founder Arthroplasty Patient Foundation a 501(c)(3) - 2006
Creator & producer, Why Am I Still Sick? - 2012
Donate www.arthropatient.org/about/donate
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  #5  
Old 11-28-2019, 11:09 PM
JackBauer JackBauer is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 63
Default

A fair point Harrison...

I should really just be saying that there are a number of indications suggesting that six degrees of movement are superior to those with less degrees. I won't search for the pubmed articles now, but they exist.

However there are also plenty of stories of people with a elastomer based disc that had poor outcomes while you've had a great outcome with your older device.

At the same time, there's a reason the Charite is no longer being implanted.

(And I'd probably choose a ProDisc over an M6 even though the M6 offers 6 degrees... based on some of the M6 failure stories and images... Especially multi-level.)
__________________
L4-L5 Broad Diffuse Bulge, mildly contacting left L5 nerve root
L5-S1 Broad Central Disc Protrusion mildly impinging left S1 nerve root
"Mild scoliosis of lumbar spine". Does not feel mild to me.


C5-C6, C6-C7 bulging, bone spurs. Imaging not looking good.


Surgery scheduled with Dr. Desai in mid-late October.
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