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Joint Health and Function: Implications of Surgical Fusions

Patient returned today who has graciously allowed me to share her history.  The key is understanding what happens to cervical joints above and below the level of the fusion. The answer is OVERLOAD and acceleration of the degenerative cascade.

35 y/o female who underwent fusion of her cervical spine at multiple levels and unfortunately suffers from severe neck and headache pain.

The disc and cervical joints serve as shock absorbers.  Take out the shock absorber surgically and the forces of daily living was transmitted above and below the level of the fusion.  The abnormal force  overload of the joint which accelerates the degenerative process.  The end result all too often is pain and surgical complications.

At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, we injected a small amount of contrast into the joints above her fusion.  This is illustrated below.  Thereafter we injected local anesthetic which significantly reduced her neck and headache pain.  Patient subsequently underwent prolotherapy which has afforded her a signficant reduction in her pain and increase in her range of motion.  Other regenerative therapy options include PRP and stem cell therapy.

C0 C1 Joint