Hello, I am a 38 year old married mother of 3 who is busy scouring the internet trying to learn all I can about cervical spine issues.
I've been seeing a neurologist since August for vertigo, muscle issues, temporary urine leakage and paresthesias. Both my family doc and neurologist mentioned MS to me and I've been busy since August having test after test performed trying to figure out what's going on with me, trying to figure out if it is MS or possibly Lymes or B12 deficiency or anything else that could explain my symptoms. I've had a brain MRI, a VNG, an EMG on my right side and tons and tons of blood work done. Everything but the VNG came out perfectly normal, I had some nystagmus show up during the test which indicated a problem with my right vestibular system but the test apparently could not pinpoint the cause, it just showed there was a problem.
I developed an intense vibration sensation in my lower left leg and foot in October and by November I was feeling it in my arms and lower back/hip/groin region as well. Neurologist didn't like this so he ordered an MRI of my cervical spine. No lesions were found but some things that totally caught me off guard did show up.
Apparently I have a broad based anterior spondylitic ridge flattening the thecal sac at C4-5 as well as associated focal disc protrusion.
At C5-6 there is a broad based spondylitic ridge.
At C6-7 there is a focal disc protrusion superimposed on broad based spondylitic ridge abutting the anterior surface of the cord.
No spinal stenosis or neural foraminal compromise. ( How can there be no spinal stenosis if there is something abutting my cord??? )
Wow, not what I was expecting at all! I've known for 20 years that I may end up with problems in my cervical spine when a chiropractor told me I had a pencil straight neck and may have problem with it in my future but I've never had much trouble with my neck so never gave his comments much thought over the past several years. I was in a very minor car accident 20 years ago and went to see this chiropractor for x-rays just to make sure everything was ok.
Thinking back the only thing that stands out is a burning I get on my left shoulder blade which I attributed to tissue damage from the accident. The burning has been around for 20 years though, so I've gotten used to it and never thought to tie it into my current symptoms.
Currently I experience muscle spasms and muscle pain, like a needle is stuck in my muscle. Vibration, tingling (sometimes painful) and burning on my toes and face. There are other things I experience also but I don't want to jabber on to much.
So from what I've read it sounds like I have arthritis in my neck? And the cervical ridges must be like bony overgrowths? I'll be seeing my neurologist next week on Monday to go over the results and will of course ask him these things also. The one thing that keeps crossing my mind though is this cervical ridging must be something that takes years to develop and I'm wondering if I'm to young for this? I'm 38 and think 38 might be a bit on the young side for cervical arthritis?
I'd like to ask one more question really quick. "Abutting" my spinal cord sounds like no small matter to me. I mean, there is something touching my spinal cord! How scary is that? Very! Is there ever a time when "abutting the spinal cord" may not be as serious as it sounds? I'm doing pretty good at remaining calm, I have to keep reminding myself that it may not be as bad as it sounds, but I am worried. What does my future hold for me?
I do have lower back issues, but that's another story for now. I am wondering now though if lots of people with spine issues have issues in multiple areas. From what I've read so far here on this forum I think so.
I'm looking forward to learning all I can from everyone here and am so glad you all take time out of your lives to post here and share your experiences. Thank you.