Surgery on the C6-C7 discs in my neck was last Thursday to relieve tension on the nerve that extended through my left arm. (The back story is that it had been causing immense pain for 9 months and none of cryotherapy, physical therapy, chiropractics, orthopedics, steroid injections, medications, massage therapy, or an inversion table helped relieve the pain in any way.)
I checked into the hospital at 6:30 and spent the next two hours getting prepped with Lauren and Johnny nearby. Finally, the anesthesia kicked in and I was wheeled back to the operating room. That’s the last thing I remember until I woke up shivering like crazy in some post-op area. I just remember asking for warm blankets and shaking really bad before being wheeled back to where I started. After a couple hours I was feeling well enough to be discharged. I had the option of spending the night but didn’t feel it was necessary.
I can’t honestly say I know what the surgeon did, but he deemed it a success! I really am in the dark as to what exactly he did—I turned down several opportunities to learn what would be done because it made me queasy. I was just like “do what you gotta do, doc, I trust you.”
That first night I was in a lot of pain. I was counting down the minutes until I was allowed to take another pain pill. At night in bed my left arm started to experience blinding, searing pain that caused me to get up and pace about the house for over an hour. It was a different pain than pre-surgery, but the same area. Apparently that could be the nerves waking back up after being dormant for so long.
Throughout the weekend and into the middle of this week I have mostly just stayed planted on the couch, getting a little exercise here or there. I knew I wasn’t supposed to lift heavy things or exercise vigorously, but I didn’t realize I was not going to be permitted to return to drive a car or go to work until cleared by the doctor at my follow-up appointment on the 22nd. I basically just wrote an email to work and said “sorry, I didn’t know, can I please work from home?” They didn’t really respond in any fashion, so I hope I won’t be fired upon return!
I won’t know for sure for a while whether or not the operation was a success, but I think I feel better. The radiating pain through my left shoulder down to the fingertips has subsided and is replaced with a different pain that feels more like the aftermath of a surgery.