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cervical radiocupathy

Lela1122LLela1122 Posts: 119
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:40 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi new to spine health, what a great site, I am currently experiencing neck pain with nerve damage into my thumbs, middle finger, with thoracic pain, The pain, or nerve pain goes down both arms, I have to say that I have had mild symptoms for 7 or 8 years and didnt think anything much until the last couple of months. I also have lordosis, I saw a neurologist this past Monday, I went for an mri thursday night and awaiting results. He said that it sounds like a pinched nerve in between the 5th and 6th cervical vertebrae. He also said it was textbook sign, I have weakness in both arms, shoulders kill me, he put me on prednisone for now and I will have an emg next week to see where the nerve damage is. Yikes, sometimes the pain is horrible. I am anxious to see what the mri says and what we do next. The xray I had back in Aug said lordosis, moderate c4-5 disc loss, right greater than left altotoaxial joint space narrowing, I know this was just the x-ray, but I have got something going on, anyone in the same boat?


  • I had what you have last spring...was having off and on tingling in my arms when driving, drying my hair, working at the computer and neck pain, muscle spasms, soreness in my arms, shoulders, blades. I had gotten an MRI done through a chiropractor, then was sent for an EMG/NV study at a neurologist by my GP, and on to a neuro-surgeon. During the 3 months of going through the tests and waiting for appts...my left arm started aching horribly, like toothache...never stopped. Nighttime was the worse and I couldn't sleep. I had a fusion done at C5/6 last June 09. Then, in July, my left arm started aching like crazy. The NS sent me to have a myelogram with CT scan and it showed that I had nerve root compression at C4/5. So I had a fusion at C4/5, where they took out the plate at C5/6 and put in a new one that covered C4/5/6.

    Yes, it does sound like you are having nerve root compression on your large nerves that come out of the vertebras. Since xrays and MRIs aren't always the best at showing the whole picture, you may be prepared for having a myelogram before having surgery to be sure they cover all the problems you may have. The myelogram dye makes the nerves show up and the CT scan goes around the whole spine, not just top and sides like the MRI. It's not pleasant at all and hurt me like Hades, but was over quickly.

    I hope you get relief soon. For me, the nerve pain got terrible and Lortab didn't touch it. The worst pain ever besides waking up from surgery. I was ready to chop my arms off or have surgery ASAP. You don't want to wait too long to have anymore damage either. Good luck to you!
  • sounds exactly like me!!! thanks for your response. I clean homes for a living and I can hardly run the vacuum without starting to hurt like crazy, also as the nerves start to hurt and act up i do start to stumble around and feel like my legs are so tired!! Do you feel that or I am crazy? when I am rested i dont limp or stumble, just such a weird sensation in my body, i know that when he did the deep tendon reflex my legs went haywire!!! I have talked to chiropracters, my reg. dr. and even dentists about thumb numbess and pain in my neck for years and noone thought maybe i should go see a neurologist. Even after that last x-ray in august, my reg, dr. said to me after three times in there with these symptoms, she said to me, you are not going to have an mri, and you wont have surgery or anything like that.She said she couldnt order it and it was a long process. I dont i like her but i dont think she quite understood what happening to me and the pain my neck and upper back! No pain pills or anything yet but i think its coming because the slightest thing I do now i ache and ache and hurt so much! I was shocked I knew something was wrong, the neurologist i saw said to me, why did you wait so long?? Partly insurance and partly because of my m.d.Thanks again i will update you when I know something. Lela
  • Lela, and Candle, that's what i have been trying to describe to everyone! I know there is more going on in my neck again. i just hope my N.S. believes me when i see him in Feb. 16th. if not i am done with him. i have to exact symptoms as you are saying also, let me know what you find out. i did have a mylogram years ago, for lumbar spine. it had me crying, but what able to diagnose my spine exactly what and where was going on. they ended up keeping me , and doing emergencey surgery the next morning, i was in so much pain i could not stand. i wish the drs. would quit pussyfutting around. good luck to you Lela! you are not alone. Leo :?? :W
  • Howdy Lela, and a hearty Welcome to Spine Health!!!

    Much of what you are describing I went through 2.5 years ago. I had surgery to fuse the C5/6 level in March of 08. For me, that surgery was a Godsend as they say. Pain - base of the neck outward across the shoulder, down the biceps, and pinchies in the fingers. Was NOT fun at all. If I turned my head wrong (like in answering someones question off to my side), wozzzer!

    Hopefully you will soon have the answers you seek, and too the resolution of same! Please keep us posted. Take care, and again, Welcome!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • The neurologist that I saw at first that did my EMG/NV study explained that if you have narrowed disc spaces and the discs are bulged out or herniated into the spinal cord, then the signals aren't getting up or down the way they should, causing headaches above and leg problems below. It all made sense that even if an individual nerve root feeding the arms is compressed, but the whole cord is squished some from the disc problems, then that affects everything below. So you are not crazy at all? Plus, the pain will drain you out too.

    Don't let certain doctors get your down either. You know how you feel and what your body is telling you. Seems they go to some school to learn to try and make you think it's all in your head. Some doctors seem to not listen and don't want to be bothered. I'm glad that you found one that is listening and willing to help you. I've got to when I go in to see one, I try to have a list made up of things I need to cover, show my pain some (which I used to try and keep it hidden cause it's humiliating to me to be weak and hurting), and then ask for tests or help. I have been bad as a female to go in and just blab, blab, blab with aniexty and worry and not get any attention. They tuned me out completely.

    After my two ACDF fusions, my arm pain has completely went away. I'm left with neck pain and upper back, blades, and shoulders now. So the fusion does help and for most people will allow them to get back to life and work. I have very bad arthritis at 45 and I'm not a typical case. Seems the upper and lower levels around my fusions are degenerated very fast and still giving me problems. My surgeon is suggest redoing the whole thing, but I'm debating whether to have more done. Good luck to you!!!
  • Hi Lela,

    First let me say welcome to spine-health. You will find many members going through or have gone through what you yourself are. Radicular pain as you are describing will go back to certain nerve roots of the spine. However there are many conditions that could also be causing your problems. Best bet is to get the MRI and see what they say is the problem. However here is a video on cervical radiculopathy with the level of nerve roots showing the pain patterns. You may also want to look at a dermatone map as well. Anyway just wanted to stop by and welcome you to spine-health. If I can do anything don't hesitate to pm me and please keep us posted on how you get along. Take care.

  • thanks for all the posts, the mri was done last Thursday, my neurologists has me scheduled for an emg this thursday, I hope to get a report from the mri soon. I have noticed that my muscles in my shoulder muscles are twitching, Its funny because I thought the twitching was just in my head then I looked down and low and behold it really is doing that!!! My doc does think its between me 5th and 6th, we just have to what is causing the pain, stenonis, disc problem, or whatever. My arms have started to weaken more and sometimes feel like picking up a pickle jar or whatever is tough!! I hope I dont have to quit my cleaning business, I make good money but I dont know if my neck can take it!! Thanks again for your support, i will let you know when I know something, Lela
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