Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Real Test

Well I had the test of all tests. I was called to do hard physical work on a jobsite in Baltimore for 2 weeks. The work consited of lifting a 10 lbs bucket literally 1000 times. Needless to say, I was very sore and tired, but the back held up great. Was some pain, but it went away after a few days of rest.

Monday, September 14, 2009


I have not updated this in quite sometime, so I thought I would get to it.

My back is great. I am about 95% pain free, and feeling great. The strength on my right side is getting back to the level of the left side. I never really realized how bad is had gotten until I started to work out and lift weights again.

Hope this blog has helped and would enjoy to read any feedback.

So long for now...

Monday, July 6, 2009

Baby is Here

My wife and I had our baby girl on June 30th. 8lbs 8oz. This is well under my 30lb weight limit!!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Still a bit sore, but good

It has been about 10 weeks now and I still feel a bit sore if I do anything physical, but overall I feel really good. Now I just need to get into better shape.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Week 9

Feel great. Pain in my arm is all but gone. Some stiffness, but that is about it. Doing my exercises religiously so I think this is helping. The numbness still comes and goes, but overall I am felling great.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

8 Weeks

Sorry I missed week 7, but was not much to tell. I felt great and started to take my brace off more and more. Was throwing my son around and doing yard work. My family continues to yell at me for doing to much, but I feel fine and believe a lot of the healing process is what is in your head.

I was right...O'Yeah!!

Just got back from my 8 week appointment and all is well. I had x-rays done and the fusion has taken very well. Still restricted to 30lb lifting max, and still can't golf or anything like that, but overall I am very pleased. My hip is not an issue at all anymore. The pain and numbness still come and go, but because this has been going on for so long, the doc says it may be almost a year before the nerves completely heal. That's fine, it already feels better on the bad days now, than it did on the good days before.

Best of all.


Thursday, May 28, 2009

6 Weeks

6 Weeks and counting down to my 8 week check up. I feel pretty good...Only notice the hip problem when I stand too long. Numbness in my finger still comes and goes, but actually goes sometimes. Started to take off my neck brace for a few a little bit at a time, but notice that if I keep it off to long the original symptoms come back, so I just put it back on. I wonder if would have just worn a next brace for 8 weeks, the pain would be gone...Humm.

Hope to have good news in the upcoming weeks. The 8 week x-rays will show if the fusion took or not. If not, I'll be screwed.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

5 weeks

Nothing really has changed this week. Still feel pretty good. Hip is still a bit sore and the brace is bugging me, but other than that I would say it is still the same. No better no worse. My doc appointment is still 3 weeks away, but I can take the brace off on Monday.

Monday, May 11, 2009

4 Weeks

Well, 4 weeks have gone by and I'm wishing time would move a bit faster. I feel good, pain down the arm is gone and the numbness in my finger is also starting to diminish...Yes!! Minimal pain in my hip so things on that front are great. However, I am entering a new challenge with this recovery process, and that is boredom. One thing I didn't think about, was how long it would take before I could do anything and I never realized how active I really was. I guess I thought it would be nice to sit around and do nothing, but that was got old after a week. It has been 4 weeks and I am finding myself fighting not to break the doctors orders, but I just remember if I do, I will be on the D.L. even longer. You would never believe how much you miss picking up your crying kid and mowing your own lawn in just 4 weeks time. O' well, finish line is coming.

Monday, May 4, 2009

3 Weeks

So it has been 3 weeks now and the progress is moving along. The pain in my hip is still present but it has gotten about 30% better than last week. Standing while putting weight on that leg is the most painful thing. Walking, walking up hill and while sitting, I really don't notice the hip. Standing and walking down a hill or steps is the most painful.

Back pain is moving along okay. I still have numbness in my finger, which is expected to be the last to go away, and some pain around the area of the fusion. The pain running down my arm is all but gone (Thank god) so I'm hoping a few more weeks and I'll be pain free.

The one thing that is getting to be a major pain in the neck (literally) is the soft neck brace. You have to wear this thing 24/7 except when in the shower, and it is really warm. You sort of forget that it is there when your in a climate controlled area, but when outside in the warm weather, or a hot office (like mine) its like wearing a super thick scarf. You inevitably work up a sweat, so I need to wash it almost daily. I would recommend a second brace to anyone who may go do this.

I guess all in all things are going as well as expected, but I have to say, I wish I would have done this way before golf season.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

After Surgery

It is now 2 weeks after the surgery and I have begun the healing process. First let me go back to when I awoke in the recovery room. At the time I felt great, the numbness was gone from my finger and not a bit of pain shooting down my are. My back was sore when I moved and my hip hurt like heck. They had a soft collar on my neck and drainage tube in my throat to let the excess fluid drain out, which was a bit gross, but not painful at all. The fist day they gave me a morphine drip, so I did’t feel a thing and I was sure everything was going to work out just fine...was feeling no pain. I was able to walk the same day of surgery up and down the hall and sleep okay that night, but was not able to move really at all in bed. I had to just lay as still as possible on my back, and that was the only position I could do. I was able to get up to use the bathroom, but had to have these pumps on my legs removed by the nurses every time, so that was a bit of a pain. The hardest and most painful part was getting back into bed. They also wake you up every couple hours to take your vital signs, so that interferes with the sleep. After the first day, you are taken off Morphine and they put me on Hydrocodone for the pain. These work very good to keep the pain away, but make you pretty tired and mess with your insides. They took out the drainage tube (Which hurt just a tiny bit) and sent me home at noon the next day after surgery. The car ride home is somewhat of an adventure, but was not too bad at all. At home I was made comfortable by the pain pills and felt pretty good and slept most of the next 3 days. After the first week, was off the pain pills altogether and was walking and showering without that much discomfort. I have to have the soft collar on at all times but the shower, but I have already gotten used to it. The pain down my arm had come back a bit and the numbness was also back, but was told this may happen. It is now Monday, 2 weeks after the surgery. I am back to work and I have some pain in my right arm am numbness in my finger, but overall I feel pretty well. Hoping I will get much better in the next few days.


About 7 years ago, I awoke to numbness in my right index finger and allot of pain shooting down my right arm. At the time I had poor insurance so did what I could do manage the pain with ibuprofen and stretching. This did not give me much relief so I went to a medical doctor who proscribed predazone. This helped a bit, but only during the time that I was on the pills and never got rid of the numbness. This drug also makes you fidgety and I couldn't sleep very well. After a few years of just living with the pain, I had better insurance and went to a Chiropractor and also had message therapy. This seemed to take care of the problem for a little while, but eventually the pain and numbness came back. After this did not work, I thought I was stuck with just going to the Chiropractor every month or so, which I did, and never really solving anything. Finally in 2008, after working out very hard, the pain came back super strong and even several visits to the Chiropractor did not help. So, I was put on Vicoden for the pain and underwent spinal epidural steroid injections and also did many sessions of physical therapy. This seemed to help for a few weeks but again, the pain came back. An MRI and CT scan were done, and showed sever degeneration of the disc between C6 & C7, which has protruded out the disc area and blocked the nerve signals running down my right arm, which caused the pain and numbness. So on Monday April 13th I decided to have cervical spinal fusion on C6&C7. They harvested a bone from my hip and placed into the opening from the removed disc tissue and connected everything with a titanium plate and 4 screws.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

2 Weeks

I had my 2 week follow up appointment. They took x-rays and removed my stitches and bandages. The pain has subsided a bit, and was told I can take Advil for a day or two, but not to keep taking it because this will interfere with the fusion. Dr. said I was in the first inning of recovery and had a long way to go. He said I need to still take it very easy. I asked about Sauna and using a tread mill. The sauna was a no-no for a few weeks, but walking on the tread mill was fine. The scare on my next is starting to heal, but it is still a bit swollen and red and very noticeable. The scar on my hip is pretty big and ugly but is going to be below my waist line, so nobody will ever see it. I'm back to work full time and I was really tired when I got home, and slept for about 9 hours last night, so I feel pretty good today. I could see on the x-rays that there was still a white line between the vertebra and new bone, so fusion is still aways away.

I guess so far so good at this stage.

Monday, April 27, 2009


I stated this blog because I found that is was hard to find information about recovery from cervical spinal fusion. What I will do in following entries is provide updates on my healing process, and details about what was done and why. I would invite you to share your own stories successful or otherwise, as well. Thanks and happy blogging.