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  • Ree
    Post count: 1

    Hi Dr. Corenman –
    I am scheduled for the above surgery on September 29th 2020 and was looking for some advice…
    I have pain, numbness, tingling, rapidly going from great handwriting to practically illegible by even me…most of my problems were in my upper body but have had an increase in weakness in all extremities including numbness/tingling etc in lower extremities including feet…I have difficulty with holding objects and now my legs besides being a bit off balance feel as if they won’t hold my weight…
    I have a vague nerve stimulator (VNS) which was implanted for depression in 2006 which makes it very difficult to have MRI’s done although when ruling out MS they were able to finally do a modified MRI of brain and cervical spine without contrast…they said there was no swelling in brain and therefore ruled outside but saw “severe” issues w cervical spine and thus sent me to the Spine Center for stat evaluation…that was back at the end of May…
    I called center a week ago Wednesday and told them of increasing symptoms and wasn’t sure if they were just normal progression and I should tough it out until my upcoming surgery or something that needed to be addressed. They called back after I listed my symptoms and said to go to ER and that my neurosurgeon would be informed that I was coming…
    They didn’t do another MRI but they did a comparison CT scan of cervical and thoracic spine and a physical assessment and tho I did not see my dr I saw someone on his team who was in contact w him. They said I was stable at that point and discharged me stating that it wasn’t an emergency at this point and therefore wouldn’t be doing surgery that night so to be sure and follow up w my dr in am to see if symptoms were worsening…when I called back the next day, the nurse told me that they were proceeding w surgery as scheduled…and if I had any further problems give the office a call…
    I could totally understand the fact that my dr(of whom I have the utmost trust in and is the expert) may not have been able to return my call, but I was disappointed in the fact that “whoever” returned my call would at least follow up on the status of my symptoms.
    Now, I continue to feel as if I am “deteriorating” in my abilities but don’t want to bother them if this is “normal” progression and will be reversible once I have recovered from surgery???
    I really don’t know if I am just being a “wimp” and overreacting to my progressive inability to do things or whether I should call again??…
    I don’t know if u can help me from what I’ve expressed but if u could give me some sort of response, I would truly be grateful..
    Thanks in advance,

    Donald Corenman, MD, DC
    Post count: 8660

    You have textbook symptoms of myelopathy, which is spinal cord dysfunction mainly due to cord compression in the cervical spine. You don’t describe your images well and it might be helpful to copy and paste your radiologist’s report here. See:

    It sounds like you have a surgery scheduled but you don’t describe your proposed surgery unless the title of your inquiry explains it (“C5-7 ACDF”). If you have progressive symptoms (they are getting worse), then your surgery should be moved up sooner than later. You are not being a wimp, you need to have this addressed soon.

    Dr. Corenman

    Donald Corenman, MD, DC is a highly-regarded spine surgeon, considered an expert in the area of neck and back pain. Trained as both a Medical Doctor and Doctor of Chiropractic, Dr. Corenman earned academic appointments as Clinical Assistant Professor and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and his research on spine surgery and rehabilitation has resulted in the publication of multiple peer-reviewed articles and two books.
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