I have some questions regarding the symptoms compared to the MRI findings. Right foraminal narrowing at C4-5 would affect the C5 nerve. This nerve does not descend into the hand (stops at the upper arm-see section “symptoms of cervical nerve injuries” on the website).
You have left foraminal narrowing at C5-6 (C6 nerve) which does go down into the hand but you had no complaints of the left hand.
You have a Klippel Feil syndrome of C6-7 (partial segmentation-see website). This does not mean much.
Arm pain typically recedes within a couple of days of surgery. Numbness (if we assume that the C6 nerve on the right was involved) will take about 3-6 months to resolve. Pins and needles (called paresthesias) should resolve in a couple of weeks if not sooner.
Biceps weakness (again assuming C6 right involvement) normally improves 1/2 a grade (there are 5 grades) immediately and can take up to 12 months to fully recover.
Naprosyn is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory. The bone grafts heal through inflammation so retarding that process is not wise. That is why I require patients to be off of these medications for six weeks after an ACDF or ADR (artificial disc replacement).
A thin pillow is ofter more comfortable than a thick pillow for these collars but a very soft pillow is important.
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.