Posted 5/3/2018 11:29 PM (GMT -6)
Hi motox and Welcome to the forum!! I know all to well what your fiance is experiencing!! I was 34 at the time I got a massive herniated disc at C6/7, felt like you severely hit your ""crazy bone"" actually your elbow, and send burning pain from your elbow down your forearm into your in hand and fingers, and there is nothing you can do to get the pain to stop!!! I had it in both arms. Anyway I was in the military (US. Air Force) stationed in Alaska. When they finally diagnosed my problem a civilian neurosurgeon in Anchorage. Alaska gave me a ACDF Anterior Cervical Disc Fusion, removing the disc and taking the bone graft from my pelvice and fuse the vertebra together. This was done in March 1985, and at that time the ACDF was a relatively new surgical approach for this type of condition. My surgery at that time was considered an emergency as the disc was severely pressing into my spinal cord and had fractured into fragments floating in my spinal canal. The neurosurgeon told me he I had a guardian angel watch over me, because of the damage, there was no logical explanation as to why I wasn't a quadrieplegic! Anyway since that time I've had 2 other fusions in my neck ACDF at C5/6 in September 2009 and Posterior fusion of articular joints at C3/4 with rods and pins November 2010. So I can definitely empathize with what your fiance is going through!
I'm sorry that I can't be of much help about his up coming surgery as I'm really not familiar with the artificial disc replacement procedure. I will say I would be more than a bit skeptical about the recovery time and the what he is being told about his capabilities will be after his surgery. At least in the short term Anyway! Right after my Surgery in 1985, I completely lost my voice for well over 3 months and had swallowing difficulties for a very long time after that! All a result of the surgeries anterior approach, as in doing the surgery they stretched and damaged the nerve going to my larynx and throat! It's not a common occurance but it's not unheard of either. And according to one ENT doctor I had seen , he said he is surprised it doesn't happen more often in this type of surgery! But the good new is and was, that terrible unrelenting arm pain was completely gone as soon as I had the surgery!!! Instant RELIEF!!!
Anyway I do wish you both all the best! And Good Luck to him and also you!!