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iSpine Discuss Paralyzed after surgery in the Main forums forums; I have a friend who is currently in Germany having undergone ADR surgery. As a result of the surgery his ...

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Old 10-02-2010, 08:14 AM
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Default Paralyzed after surgery

I have a friend who is currently in Germany having undergone ADR surgery. As a result of the surgery his neck moves like a dream but has become paralyzed as a result of the surgery. He can move his left arm slightly but cannot use his left hand. He cannot move his right arm and has no use of his right hand, plus he cannot move his legs. His doctor will be moving him to a special clinic that only works on spinal problems.

Does anyone know of any other patients who have undergone anything like this? Its been two weeks since surgery and I am becoming increasingly concerned for his complete and full recovery. Any advice is greatly welcomed.

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Old 10-02-2010, 05:40 PM
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Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 1,596

Hi J and welcome to the forum,

I am so sorry for your friend. I know how scarry this is.

I can only speak from personal experience. I have no idea if this is similar to your friend's circumstance or what might have caused the paralysis. I had a lumbar 3 level in 2005 (coming on my 5 year anniversary). During the surgery, the nerve root to my left leg was irritated. Exactly what this means I cannot tell you. I awoke from surgery not able to move or feel either of my legs. I was started on Neurontin. Within a few days, my right leg began to return, now about 90%, but my left leg did not begin to come back for about 6 months and even now is only 60-75%. Also, a few days after surgery, even though I had limited feeling, both my legs became hypersensitive to any touch, including the weight of the blanket. For months I had to sleep with leggings so nothing would touch my legs. Even today, my left foot and ankle burn all the time, mostly mild but sometimes not.

If this is nerve related, they respond very slowly, if at all. Nerves and nerve regeneration are still mostly a mystery to the medical community. I assume a nerve conductivity test has been done on your friend but then again, perhaps this is something completely different. Please give us more details. Who did the surgery and what was done? To what clinic is your friend being moved? What are the doctors saying? Were any of these symptoms present prior to surgery? What meds, if any, are being used to treat this? Has there been any improvement at all since the symptoms began?

Please keep us posted and I wish your friend well.

3 level Prodisc adr S1-L3, Oct 12, 2005
Dr. B in Bogen, Germany
Severe nerve damage in left leg, still working on it
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Old 10-02-2010, 07:39 PM
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Posts: 2,405
Default re paralyzed after surgery

Hi J,
From your description it sounds as tho your friend had cervical ADR vs. lumbar?

Is there anyone there with your friend? It's scary enough to travel a long distance for surgery and then to have a complication such as this ~ that's really scary..

Mark is the person here who has traveled/worked most extensively with patients and surgeons in Germany so he would have seen the most action so to speak altho there are a number of persons here who have had cervical ADR (as well as those that have had lumbar ADR and/or both).

I do hope your friend has someone there for emotional support. I cannot imagine how stressful this is for him. Wishing him the best for a full/complete recovery how ever long it might take.
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Old 10-02-2010, 09:45 PM
mmglobal's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 2,510

I've had 3 clients with paralysis after cervical surgery at Stenum hospital. 2 were partial, with limitations on the use of arms. One is confined to a wheelchair, years later.

I'm not sure that knowlege of other cases is helpful now. However, there may be decisions that need to be made and the ability to make rational, informed decisions is key. Do your friends have the support of their home medical providers now?
1997 MVA
2000 L4-5 Microdiscectomy/laminotomy
2001 L5-S1 Micro-d/lami
2002 L4-S1 Charite' ADR - SUCCESS!
2009 C3-C4, C5-C6-C7, T1-T2 ProDisc-C Nova
Summer 2009, more bad thoracic discs!
Life After Surgery Website
President: Global Patient Network, Inc.
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Old 10-03-2010, 01:24 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 5

My friend has experienced some improvement with the use of both arms now. However, having reviewed a couple of articles in medical journals, as well as posts in this forum and a couple of others, I believe the time has arrived to begin collecting information to use if the need should arise within the very near future.

His surgery involved the c6-7, c4-5, c3-2 region with decompression and two artificial vertebra placements. From what I understand, his natural c6-7 disk had penetrated nearly halfway into the spine and that once the doctor removed this protruding disk swelling occurred and hence the paralysis. Based upon my research, the cause of the paralysis could also be attributed to several other causes. My greatest fear, which I haven't shared with him of course, is that the longer the paralysis remains the less opportunity for a full and complete recovery.

What I need to do is to begin contacting other knowledgeable surgeons who have experience repairing work that comes out of Stenum, as well as the names and contact information of attorneys with experience in this area.

Any ideas????? Thanks to everyone for your help!!!!
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Old 10-03-2010, 04:47 AM
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Posts: 2,405
Default hmmm

I'd think the best thing for your friend is to make sure that the best medical care is at hand re working this up and recovery/rehabbing esp. if there's nothing more surgically to be done vs. the idea of pursuing a lawsuit for malpractice/negligence which may be extremely difficult to prove if at all possible even German courts even deal with this sort of problem.

Wishing your friend the best and glad to hear the arms/hands have (andwill) continue to improve!
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