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Neck symptoms

WendeWWende Posts: 51
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:43 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi everyone I have decided to post the symptoms to get some feed back.
-The knobby bone at base of neck is sore all the time, but if i drive or sit a certain way or lurch my head forward it hurts like 6. With it, it swells, it sends pain up into neck along the top of my shoulder. If its really bad it makes my arms ache but no real extremity issues just aching.
I get pain in between my shoulder blades feels like i am being stabbed with a hot ice pick there and it creates a ball of fire there.
I went to see my neurosurgeon, he scheduled me an mri which is may 21 of my cervical spine and referred me to a physiatrist, who in turn referred me to pt, the physiatrist diagnosis for pt is shoulder impingement syndrome, a possible herniated cervical disc, neck pain, shoulder pain, and brachial neuritis or radiculitis.

Pt is having me do home exercise program of supine cervical retractions 6 or 7 at onset of pain or once an hr. And cervical traction 10 tractions an hr. Until i return in 2 weeks to see them. and then we will move on to the next pt exercise i guess. She also thinks i have a herniated disc there, since i cannot lean my head forward or look at the ceiling without giving myself serious pain.

Anyone have any ideas of what else i can do. I just finished a prednisone dose today. Docs gave me anti inflammatories which i can resume taking tomorrow. and i am using heat and ice alternating. and taking soma but that only helps my shoulder pain not the neck issue.

Just playing the waiting game i guess for now, until i get the mri, will have results same day, as my ns appt is right afterwards.

Hope everyone has a painfree week. Take care



  • I'm sorry to hear you're having neck issues now. I too have a nerve impinging C7 but have more arm and elbow pain. When I had whiplash before I had that pain in the shoulder at the sternocloidalmastoid muscle and the bump on the back of my neck was sore. I took valium a muscle relaxant which really helped. Acupuncture may help also. Best wishes with your MRI and NS appointment. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Howdy Ms. Wende!!!

    You and I have chatted bunches, so when I saw a posting with you as the author, I had to drop in! Are you having any issues in your triceps? When I yawned, yeah...yawned, my C6/7 went, and I lost most of the strength of my triceps *and* had megga burning pain in my shoulder blades! How about any affects to your index or middle fingers?

    Another area they might look at too (and I say this again for the shoulder blades) is the swelling; is it possible the spiny process (bones) are binding? I hope they find it to be a simple fix. I will send good vibes and energy your way woman!!! Support *hugz*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hey Wende,

    Here is the kicker with neck issues, because of the cord in the C-spine I hate to ever speculate on anything till someone has had a mri. My best experience says stick with the plan the therapist has given you for now. I know you want it to go away, but doing anything else than what you are doing could cause more issues. I always think it is important to first get a diagnoses as you are doing with the films. While they can speculate as to what it is, there could be other issues such as muscular doing it and the diagnoses is important. From my stand point after my accident I was sent off to therapy with saying I had a strain and lets just say that made it all worse. I know it is hard to wait it out but hang in there count down the days that have passed sense you seen the doc or say only x amount of days till the mri. Hopefully you will just have a muscular issue and nothing to major and some therapy will get you on the right track. Take care for now.
  • How can a doctor write a script like that? It's kinda like I might have banged my big toe, or maybe I sprained it or maybe I broke it or maybe a tractor trailer ran me over!! I know my PT would not treat me without better info. They actually refused to treat me after I found out I had a fracture until the surgeon wrote out detailed instructions.

    It's hard to wait but I would err on the conservative side until getting the MRI. Any chance to get it moved up a few days?
  • hiya ms. wende,
    sorry your in so much pain,and waiting
    you prob need to speak to work that traveling is taking toll on your body and all the stress..
    i will keep you in my prayers
    take care
    neck,bone spurs pain started 04, back issues and fusion l4,l5 06~hardware removed.
    good few yrs. 09 pain sharp, numbness feet,legs, diagnosed fibro, neurop. legs.lung issues.
    daily goal do good thing for someone.
  • Pain pain and more pain....
    to charry i havent tried accupuncture yet. thanks for the suggestion, and concern.
    to brenda (aviatrix) the aching is on the sides of my upper arms not sure what muscle that is.. and very much pain in my right shoulder.
    no i have no finger issues, except for every once in awhile when i am driving my thumb and pointer and pinky tips go tingly, but otherwise there is no issues, there. i just don't want to go through this. and i do not want this to become a major issue for me. but the longer its taking to get better the more worried i get. I dont want to be a fall apartie!
    I am good at waiting things out. just worried is all i guess.
    I had the exams that the physical therapist and the physiatrist did made me feel a bit more pain than before I went. But, I will take the events with a grain of salt and keep pushing forward. I refuse to believe anything of my body as I know this could very well be all muscular until I read the reports anyway. All I know is this hurts.
  • Howdy Wende,

    As Tamtam brought up, any chance you can get an MRI anytime soon? Some of what you're describing could be in the lower neck (C6/7/8) depending on exactly where in the "side" of the arm. Depending what the MRI shows, he might then send you for an NCV/EMG. Just tossing some thoughts. I'm sorry you are hurting. *hug*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hi, I went through something similar when I first started having symptoms. Seems the doctors wanted to pass me around and see where I landed first. The pain was horrible and still is sometimes even after 3 neck surgeries (don't let me scare you, I'm a special case). I stopped going to PT after getting more pain from the mild exercises they were having me do. I didn't want to risk more damage to my spinal cord and discs than I already had. I can see where they may think your problem is more muscular, but the way you are talking, it could be herniations. I had a neurologist that scared me somewhat about how close the spinal cord is in your neck and how some injuries can be made alot worse. I had some bone spurs along with my herniations that were poking the nerve roots and surrounding tissues. Evidently, those spurs are like little shark teeth or can be shaped that way I guess from the neurologists description. I still have one that was beside my cord and the surgeon didn't want to risk the damage to remove it at C5/6.

    It took me like from March until June to get to surgery for my first herniated disc problem at C5/6. ARGH! I wasn't complaining loud enough I guess to get quicker attention. I don't know, but I hurt so bad I cried, but in private. My pain in my right arm was throbbing at nighttime the last few weeks before surgery. I was ready to chop my arm off myself.

    Bless you and I hope you get some relief quickly. I know it's frustrating and aggravating and all those things, on top of the pain.
  • I suggest starting with the simple, usual, common and probable causes first before worrying about more severe problems.
    Wear and tear takes its toll; the joints lose flexibility and cushioning and tend to lock together, the muscles keep trying to move these joints and get a bit over worked and tight.
    This tightness then puts stress on the spine, causing more joints to get out of line, and on it goes.
    It happens to all of us as we age and don't take care of our spine and muscles. I found this out the hard way before forums!
    So, based on my similar symptoms and experience, go to a good physiotherapist and have all of your spinal joints checked for stiffness or other problems. Any areas of concern should then be treated by the physio, if possible.
    After that, get a remedial or sports massage to start getting the muscles to relax and behave.
    You will likely need a couple of these to get them to settle, and then regular massages as maintenance thereafter.
    Simple treatments, but what an enormous pain relief they give.
  • Had my mri today and according to my ns, everything is structurally sound in there. That's great news. So whatever is wrong is only a muscular issue. Now if only my meds would help in entirity i would be in good shape. Ns also says the pt will help more since it is only muscular.

  • Whew! Wende, sorry you are still hurting, but soooo happy to see it isn't anything serious that is going on or changing in your neck. I hope the PT and meds resolve all this for you. Happy *HUGZ*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Wende,

    That is great news for you that is muscular. I would suspect with all the traveling, and what not has a lot to do with it. I am sure your neck is not happy with all the different beds and pillows you been subjected to lately with the traveling. Hope you can soon start some therapy that will really help you out.
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