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Cervical Spinal Stenosis, Myelopathy and Radiculopathy

Cervical Spinal Stenosis, Myelopathy and Radiculopathy

The cervical spine is the upper part of the spinal column in the neck. The spinal cord and nerve roots (which supply function to the arms) travel through the spinal canal down to the upper back. As the spine ages and degenerative disc disease develops, bone spurs called osteophytes can cause compression of the spinal cord (spinal stenosis) or compression of a single or multiple nerve roots.

If the spinal cord is compressed, cervical myelopathy symptoms can develop. Patients can feel their hands weaken or clumsy. They can begin dropping things, difficulty with fine motor function such as writing, feeling off balance, uncoordinatedand legs feel stiff or heavy. MRI scans often show an area of narrowing of the cervical spinal canal with compression of the spinal cord like an hourglass narrowing. Mild spinal stenosis can be monitored, but patients with more serious spinal cord symptoms mayrequire surgery. Surgical intervention may be treated from the front (anterior) or from the back (posterior). Anterior cervical discectomy or disc replacement can be performed through a small incision from the front. Or multilevel stenosis may require a posterior laminectomy or laminoplasty from the back. Most patients experience reduction or resolution of their pre-operative symptoms.

When arm pain is the predominant symptom, usually one or more cervical levels may have bone spurs which put pressure on a specific nerve root. Symptoms of arm pain from the shoulder to the hands may be accompanied by numbness, tingling and muscle weakness. Conservative therapy may resolve these symptoms. In a small percentage of patients, minimally invasive anterior (front) or posterior (back) surgery can relieve these symptoms. Usually fast recovery in 6-8 weeks is anticipated.

Patient Testimonials

"Dr. Kropf is literally a miracle worker. I have suffered with horrible pain for years from herniation at L4/5 & L5/S1. Had a prior micro-surgery from another surgeon which did not work. Dr. Kropf performed a double fusion through the stomach and back. Had my 7 month follow up yesterday and got a clean bill of health. Honestly, after about 5 months I was totally pain free. He completely nailed it!!! I also just referred one of my good friends who also feel in love with Dr.Kropf. I had interviewed 7 surgeons with my wife and we both agreed that there was no one better to do my surgery. This was not a fun thing to go through, but so worth it. Katie, Sakura, and Trisha also were awesome to deal with and super responsive."

-Lee E

“Dr. Kropf is a very knowledgeable and experienced surgeon. He is just as straight forward and honest as I remember him from 19 years ago. He did an amazing job with my back then, that I flew across the country to discuss the second surgery with him!”
"First off, I believe Dr. Kropf helped save my life! It's been 6 months since I had my surgery and my spine has fused successfully! Dr. Kropf and his amazing staff treated me like a human being instead of just a patient! The support and encouragement they gave me throughout the few years I have been going is incomparable! Thank you to all those who helped me during my recovery, especially Sakura, and Trisha! You are all Angels on Earth! God Bless you!"

-Stefifi A

"This man gave me my life back! I wouldn't be working today with him as a spine nurse ! I had a cervical fusion & artificial disc replacement for my lower back ! He's caring & compassionate & so is his staff ! He saved my husbands life also by ordering the right tests & got him to another specialist , I feel so blessed to have him! "

-Anastacia H

"I had a Cervical Spine Surgery February 2017 and Lumbar Spine Surgery November 2017. Both Surgeries were a Success. I feel so much better....No More Pain! Thank You, Dr. Kropf... You're the BEST!"

-Martha B