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Will I recover from shoulder and neck pain after fusion of C-4 and C-7?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
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I am 6-8 weeks into cervical spine infusion surgery. They fused C-4--C-7 I am experiencing a lot of shoulder, neck, arm and left front of my neck pain. I take Percocet every 6 hours for pain relief. Will I recovery and will the pain subside? I understand I am rebuilding bone mass in the recovery process. I am 70 years old. What should I do? XXXX
Posted Thu, 26 Dec 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Luchuo Engelbert Bain 3 hours later
Brief Answer: No worries for now. Detailed Answer: Hi and thanks for the query, I do understand it could be disturbing. However, I would be important to note that, especially such circumstances, time would be very important factor. The nerves that supply the areas where you are experiencing pain originate from the same area and nerve trunks. This is at the level of the neck region (cervical spine) called the brachial plexus. This is a normal phenomenon/side effect of the procedure, so you really need to be bothered. I do think Percocet is an appropriate pain control agent under these conditions. I might be necessary to avoid repetitive mobilization of the neck, try to keep it aligned. In case of excessive pain, you could add another simple Analgesic like Acetaminophen. I suggest should do a blood calcium test, to be sure of the amount of Calcium in the Body. Calcium supplementation could be necessary at some point in facilitating adequate bone recovery. The recovery process would not be as fast or spectacular as is the case with children and very young adults. I think you really need not bother much. Keep the neck under good position, avoid too much mobilization for the moment, continue with Percocet, add a simple Analgesic like Acetaminophen in case of severe pain and control blood Calcium Level. You should however not fail to consult your doctor in case within the next two weeks, the pain does not subside , or it aggravates. Thanks and hope this helps as I wish you just the best of health. Please feel free asking follow up questions in case you got any specific concerns. I would be glad to contribute my bit. Kind regards, Bain, MD.
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