finally met with neurosurgeon
I will try to keep this short. After having my nerve testing done by my neurologist (EMG, CT without contrast), who then referred me to a neurosurgeon, I met today to go over the results from the myelogram (with contrast) I had about 2 weeks ago.
My worst disk issue is *not* C5-C6, as I thought (from my arm and hand numbness and pain, esp. my thumb and index finger), but C3-C4. This is the only place where there is compression of the disc against the spinal cord. There is some moderate stenosis in C5-C6, which means that there are potentially 3 places where I could have a cervical spine infusion. We discussed the option ("moderate") of doing only C3-C4, but given my symptoms we could end up going back later. The "aggressive" option would be to do all 3. NOTE: HE DID NOT PRESSURE ME TO DO ANY OF THESE.
We did discuss other options such as PT, acupuncture, shots et al, but because of the imaging he did not think these would provide anything but temporary relief and not fix the root cause.
We discussed in some detail what the surgery would involve and what the recovery would be, as well as potential complications. He actually spent at least an hour!
I would certainly like to hear what people think. I have been living
with this arm/hand pain and numbness for about 3 years. I do not want
this to continue to become a permanent disability..I already have difficulty
picking things up and even holding a pen.