I am having neck pain with weakness after anterior discectomy of C3, C4 and C5. Why?

Q. What causes neck pain with weakness after anterior discectomy of C3, C4 and C5?

Answered by
Dr. Patil Mahaveer Jingonda
and medically reviewed by Dr. Divya Banu M
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 29, 2020 and last reviewed on: Jun 15, 2023

Hello doctor,

I am 31 years old, before 16 years underwent anterior discectomy of c3c4&c4c5 with fusion. Even had neck pain and pain got radiated to neck and back while working. Suffering with pain for 16 years but I got used to it. But for past few months neck became very very week am not able to bare my head weight and not able to keep neck in straight position. Now for past 20 to 25 days having severe neck pain, weakness of full both hands and legs sometimes with numbness. Eye pressure and back head pain. I am not able to keep neck at straight position. Getting breaking sound if I rotate the neck. Neck movement is restricted. I have attached my recent MRI report, can you please tell me what is the actual issue with this.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have gone through your query and medical history along with the attached reports (attachment removed to protect patient identity). The problem does not seem to be due to the fused C3-4 or C4-5 levels. In fact a disc prolapse at C5-C6 with nerve compression is causing the present symptoms. I would suggest you to go for physiotherapy sessions including cervical traction along with neck strengthening passive and active exercises, SWD/IRT. It would always be better to avoid going through another surgery considering the post-operative complications. Hence, in my personal opinion, you should avoid a re-surgery and go for conservative line of management. Analgesics, anti-inflammatory tablets, hot fomentation and use of cervical soft collar will help. If the symptoms do not improve, you can consult an Orthopedist/Neurosurgeon for further management.

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