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Anyone 70+ with arthritis and osteoporosis had this done and if so how is it going?

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Replies to "Anyone 70+ with arthritis and osteoporosis had this done and if so how is it going?"

Hello @lfortin and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. You will notice that I have moved your post into an existing discussion on this same topic so you may connect with members such as @constancebabe @jenniferhunter and @amywood20.

As well, feel free to go back through the previous comments to see what you can learn while we wait for others to join.

Is this a procedure that you have been presented with as a recommendation for you personally or someone you care for?

@lfortin I had a cervical fusion in my 50's, but I don't have osteoporosis. Bone quality is a factor if any hardware will be screwed into the bone because screws can become dislodged or loosen. I didn't want hardware because my body reacts to metals such as pierced earrings and I had to give that up. I had a single level fusion at C5/C6 with only a bone graft (no hardware) and stayed in a hard collar until it fused which was 3 months. I knew that going in and made that choice and that time went by faster than I thought since I focused on resting and healing. You might want to ask if you can have a procedure without hardware. A surgeon takes a risk when they allow a patient to make that choice because you have to be careful and compliant and just stay home instead of riding in a car that could be involved in an accident when you are not fused yet. Other factors that affect bone healing adversely are smoking which I mention for information, but I have never been a smoker. I do take bio-identical hormone replacement which does help to preserve bone density and I healed well and spinal fusion had begun at 3 months post op. With spinal discs that collapse, it puts pressure on the facet joints when they get closer together and causes arthritic changes. A bone spacer in a fusion restores normal height and takes pressure off the facet joint which will no longer move because that level is fused.