Ankylose This! Living with Ankylosing Spondylitis

Friday, August 05, 2005

Cervicothoracic extension osteotomy

This abstract from the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery describes what has to be the worst-case surgical procedure: cervicothoracic extension osteotomy, performed in cases of chin-on-chest deformity among ankylosing spondylitis patients. If I'm parsing this correctly, and I may not be, this means that when your spine has completely fused, and fused in a way that your neck curls forward so that your chin is on your chest, they cut into your spine and remove bone to straighten you out, at considerable risk. (The full article is for-pay only, and expensive at that.)

This is why they're always on about us maintaining good posture, isn't it?

Comments on this post

  • be careful what you wish for. you may get more than you bargained for. i am currently in recovery for the above cervical osteotomy. what was to be a week long hospital stay lasted for two months. nerve damage which was the most excruciating, screaming, crying pain in my arms that i have ever had rendered my arms useless as far as strength and use go caused a second operation just like the first to repair damage. the screaming reduced itself to just plain agonising pain with a slight improvement in use. three months later i am still without use of my hands for most things but the cervical part of the operation is healing fine. i also acquired while in the hospital what is known as a bacterial infection which required two months of iv antibiotic therapy. now i am on two antibiotic pills for the next six months. these months have been the worst time in my fifty years of life. the operation was a sucess, but the other side effects have almost killed me. it was done at a world renown hospital by a world renown doctor. go figure.

    Posted by Anonymous Anonymous (9/07/2006 8:48 PM)  

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