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Is surgery an effective option to treat a bone spur at the back of the neck?

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Posted on Tue, 31 Jul 2018
Question: I have a bone spur C5 that is apparently causing daily headaches on the left side of my head. I have tried massage, physical therapy, and pain meds. I consulted a neurosurgeon who recommends surgery. Is it safe? is it effective?
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Answered by Dr. Erion Spaho (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
Benefits much better than risks.

Detailed Answer:
Hello and thanks for using HCM.

I have read your question and understand your concerns.

Every surgical procedure could result in complications that may be related to anesthesia, potential damage during the procedure, wound infection, etc.

Complications altogether may result in small percentage ( around 3-4 % ) compared to the benefits of surgery (around 95%).

It depends also on the choice of the surgical procedure, in your case, since there is a well known affected nerve root, keyhole surgery may be appropriate.

Anyway, you should discuss with your Neurosurgeon about these issues.

If there is no sufficient improvement after conservative treatment, surgery remains the best option.

Hope you found the answer helpful.

Let me know if I can assist you further.

Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
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Answered by
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Dr. Erion Spaho

Neurologist, Surgical

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 4432 Questions

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Is surgery an effective option to treat a bone spur at the back of the neck?

Brief Answer: Benefits much better than risks. Detailed Answer: Hello and thanks for using HCM. I have read your question and understand your concerns. Every surgical procedure could result in complications that may be related to anesthesia, potential damage during the procedure, wound infection, etc. Complications altogether may result in small percentage ( around 3-4 % ) compared to the benefits of surgery (around 95%). It depends also on the choice of the surgical procedure, in your case, since there is a well known affected nerve root, keyhole surgery may be appropriate. Anyway, you should discuss with your Neurosurgeon about these issues. If there is no sufficient improvement after conservative treatment, surgery remains the best option. Hope you found the answer helpful. Let me know if I can assist you further. Take care.