Fused Discs in neck...

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by beachgrappler, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. beachgrappler

    beachgrappler Orange Belt

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    I am a 22 year old college student with a few years of grappling experiece. About a month ago i woke up severe pain in my neck/upper back and numbing down my right arm. I scheaduled an MRI and was shown the results this week. I have at least two discs in my neck that need to be fused together. The ortho doctor said i have degenerative disc disease. This pain was all of a sudden and out of no where. The doctor said i will probably never be able to do a contact sport again. This makes me very sad and i have a few questions for anyone who has had neck problems (discs).

    - were you able to make a come back after surgery and therapy?
    - should i attempt to continue my bjj training or just hang it up and focus on my health?
    - this sucks
     
  2. Trickster***

    Trickster*** Banned Banned

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    I have a friend that had 2 disc's fused (due to a car accident) and his Dr. told him not to do anything, but he seemed to recover well.

    Look at what happened to Nate Quarry...he had that thing done by Nuvasive and he was good to go....so I think its a case to case basis.

    Good Luck, get well!
     
  3. MonkeyNuts!

    MonkeyNuts! Rear Naked Poker

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    Wow and I thought my neck was bad.

    I have a herniated C6/C7 and a couple dessicated discs. I'm only 24. How the heck did yours get so bad? You must have had some symptoms before this - didn't your neck ever hurt, have radiating pain through your shoulder blades, etc? Unless you have some sort of trauma, this shouldn't just pop out of nowhere.

    I'd get a second opinion if it's just herniation, and not severe stenosis or something. Seems strange you have to jump all the epidurals and therapy before it and immediately go into surgery, especially at your age. Fusion surgery is not fun at all, I'm told quality of life afterwards is not taht much better.
     
  4. Gasmasker

    Gasmasker Guest

    Lumbar fusion and cervical fusion are different animals. Nate Quarry is by far the exception when it comes to lumbar fusion. Most folks would not be able to return to high level mma after that.

    Cervical fusion is a much easier procedure to rehab from. Most people do really well afterwards and can be as active as they want to be. I don't know about contact sports however. Full on mma night be out but just bjj may not be out of the question assuming you get a solid fusion with no post-op complications.

    If you need a fusion you are much better off needing cervical instead of lumbar. Lumbar fusion is a major surgery that requires extensive recovery and rehab and long term results are quite variable. Cervical fusion usually rquires one night in the hospital and is pretty easy to get over. If you are having bad shoulder and arm pain that will most likely be gone when you wake up from surgery. You will probably be back to work in a week.

    Also, not all herniated cervical discs require surgey. I blew my c6-7 disc 4 years ago and have not had any surgery. i had three epidural steroid injections, some pt, and i am fine now. My neck will flare-up a few times a year and get sore for a few days but nothing major. If you can avoid cervical fusion in the short term, you may eventually be able to have cervical disc replacement instead. Its a newer approach but i don't think we are that far away from it being a viable and widely available option in the States. I think it is common in Europe now.
     
  5. Push

    Push White Belt

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    I agree, get a second opinion. You never know, the doctor may have seen it wrong. It's happened to me before. Doctor said I had a tumor in my sack, went to a different doctor and he said it was a hernia. It was a hernia and doesn't know how the other doctor saw a tumor. I know our situations are different, I was just making the point that doctors can see something completely wrong. Good luck and I hope you have a speedy recovery.
     
  6. georgejjr

    georgejjr Black Belt

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    Get a second medical opinion. If it confirms what the first said, go talk to a very good sports physio. Most importantly, don't get your medical advice from an internet forum.
     
  7. MonkeyNuts!

    MonkeyNuts! Rear Naked Poker

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    Do you get any pain in your upper tricep area, near your armpit? I keep getting transient pains there - my doc insists its muscular but I think its maybe a compressed nerve due to my c6/c7 disc (tho i have no other pains elsewhere in my neck/back).

    it will be some time before i can get another MRI, was just wondering ifyou had similar symptoms
     
  8. Richard Emling

    Richard Emling Black Belt Professional Fighter

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    i have a fused lower back with a ****l inplant and a piece of cadaver bone screwed in i was told i will also be getting my neck fused in the next 2 years and my orthspinal surgon told me i will be able to fight again mabey you shoud get a second opinion from a sports medicine doctor
     
  9. MonkeyNuts!

    MonkeyNuts! Rear Naked Poker

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    my god that sucks

    hows your immune system not attack that cadaver bone...
     
  10. Gasmasker

    Gasmasker Guest

    No, my pain was on the inside part of my upper arm and down into my thumb. It was like a toothache in my arm. Very annoying. I still get a twinge in my thumb from time to time. Also had some pain under my shoulder blade.
     
  11. Gasmasker

    Gasmasker Guest

    Tell us about the lumbar fusion if you don't mind. Why did you need it? How long in the hosp? How much post-op pain, and how difficult was the rehab?
     
  12. beachgrappler

    beachgrappler Orange Belt

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    @ the poster who has weakness in the tricep area. yes that is what i have as well. get an MRI done, my doctor who was a well known spine surgeon said that if i recieved too much pressure in that area i could of been in a hospital bed for life. IE: a kick to the head, bad car crash with whip lash. probably nothing from jiu jitsu unless i was dropped on my neck or cranked severly. overall this blows. I am having cervical surgery on may 27th for C5 to C6 and C6 to C7. they go through the front of my neck to do this so i will have a two inch scar on the front of my neck. i am pretty nervous and sad at the same time. any ideas on how to get my mind off of bjj and into a sport i could actively enjoy with little contact. thank you :(
     
  13. Meegle818

    Meegle818 Blue Belt

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    i broke my c5 and spent 9 weeks in a halo followed my 6 months in soft brace, went through many PT treatments, twice a week chiropractic sessions, lots and lots...and lots of neck/back exercises. 5 years later, i started bjj...but it's limited. I'm never going to go against the guy the weighs 250 lbs at the gym. (i'm 140 soaking wet) I'm prob never going to do a tournament, I'm been doing bjj for a over a year, and its for the physical and "mental chess game" enjoyment. You don't have to spazz and go 100% to be better than someone. I'm by far the most passive bjj player i've ever seen, but i still get position.

    Get a second opinion, surgey is always the last resort. There has to be something else you can do. Like i said, i sent to PT and chiropractic sessions twice a week...my insurance was a lot (and i'm still paying for it) but it will still be cheaper than a freaking spinal fusion surgery
     
  14. QingTian

    QingTian Purple Belt

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    I don't know anything about this subject, but I read a post in the judoforum.com by a sports doctor, who said that orthopedics don't have any real training on treating spinal injuries, that fusion only relieves pain but doesn't help you return to normal. He said to see a neurologist, and that a fusion surgery is more about money.
     
  15. MonkeyNuts!

    MonkeyNuts! Rear Naked Poker

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    My neck/back pain is pretty much gone, all I have is a dull ache in my tricep area.

    I second the advice to see a neurologist (that's what I saw after getting my MRI two years ago).

    C6/C7 is the most common neck herniation. I can't imagine everyone has to get fusion surgery.
     
  16. blink_man182

    blink_man182 Black Belt

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  17. shane30

    shane30 Yellow Belt

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    I have two slipped disc in my neck. this has been going on for almost a year. I have done pt, injection, and about to do acup. Surgery is the very last result. Dr told me that there is no set time limit for these typ of injuries, and thatssome heal on their own and some need surg. Im on the fence. Anyways, my advice to you, is to get a second opinion, seek out pt. Do what ever you can to avoid surgery. When it comes to the helth of your spine, that should come first before bjj. Good luck.
     
  18. Darksky

    Darksky Blue Belt

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    Whatever you do make sure to get a 2nd and 3rd opinion. This is gonna affect you your whole life so make sure someone else doesnt have a better plan for you. I had a complete pec tear about 5 years back doing BJJ and the Doc said I would never do Strenuous activity again, I went to a 2nd doctor who was way more positive did a much better job, never said I was done and have been grappling/BJJ 3-4 times a week ever since. You are too young to be done get a few guys opinions.

    Good Luck
     
  19. Darksky

    Darksky Blue Belt

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    Agree with SHane avoid surgery at all costs.
     
  20. Darksky

    Darksky Blue Belt

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    Agree with SHane avoid surgery at all costs. Try all other avenues first.
     

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