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Help from other cervical folks...cord pressure?

nowwhat44nnowwhat44 Posts: 47
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:54 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Some of you may have seen me here under the lumbar area, which I have issues with as well. But here is my situation and any advice or opinions are welcome.

I was fused at the c5/c6 level in 2007 due to a severe herniation. I am also fused at 15/s1 for same reason. Well turns out I have severe stenosis in my l4/l5 now from arthritis, bone spurs and all that fun stuff. Now I bring that up because the last week or so I have had some pain, but more like tightness in between my shoulders and my arm(s) sometimes feel kinda heavy at times. But it all comes and goes and it's fine when I sleep, it's only after I get up and as the day goes on. While I am asleep, however, I sometimes wake with one of my hands completely asleep, but not sure if it's related. I am sure this has something to do with my cervical issues, perhaps I now have stenosis in there too since I have it in my lumbar. I mean, if you have it in one place, does it make you more likely to have it elsewhere? Like a genetic thing. But what I am most concerned with is possible pressure on the cord itself. This is different than when I had the disk herniation and had pain all down the arm and shoulder. It's less pain and more a tightness between my shoulders with occasional arm "heaviness." Like I said too, it all comes and goes. I can feel perfectly fine and then it kicks in for a bit. It's kind of scary. Anyone have this feeling or something similar? I am making an appointment with my doctor of course, but in the meantime any info from the community would be helpful.


  • i had in the lumbar and cervical not sure about the thoracic. I still have stenosis in the cervical which a c2-c7 laminecotmy should take care of that. I know it will only get worse over time. Seems like an everlasting battle with me anyway.
  • MetalneckMetalneck Island of Misfit toysPosts: 1,364
    I also wake up with a completely numb left hand. Sometimes its just the pinky and ring finger ... sometimes its both thumbs only.

    I have known problems with C3 and am fused from C4 - C7. Cord impingment at C3 and other old problems with the 4 - 7 disks and fact arthropathy at C7 - T1 and generalized pain - neck -between shoulders and into my left arm.

    So the moral of the story is .... yes these are typical symptoms of either disc problems, formanial stenosis, ostephytes, and or possible mylopathy.

    Bottom line .... time for an updated MRI and/or review of these issues with you doctor(s).

    I also have herniations at L2 - L5.

    Regards and hopes for a rapid appropriate recovery - relief of your symptoms,

    Spine-health Moderator
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  • If I can ask, Metalneck...why is it that your still in such pain after the fusion and what symptoms do you get from the cord?
  • Kind of the same boat as Dave. I still have issues with pain, as the nerves are permanently damaged and suffer with the symptoms of myelopathy. If you want to see what symptoms of cord compression can be look up cervical myelopathy and it will give you a idea. As far as your question does it progress, not really, like that as in a disease process. For the most part the problem that most get is adjacent disc failure. After the levels are fused and they no longer work it places additional stress on the other levels. You might want to also look up degenative disc disease and understand that as it is not really a disease process. Now if you suffer from osteo then it is possible that it would be more progressive as far as stenosis goes. But when you have a cord compression it causes many nuerological symptoms, as if your brain is not really making the connection to the rest of your limbs is the best I can describe.

    I am fused from c3-c7 but was done over many surgeries. At the end of the day all the emg test still show the nerves are damaged. Also on the surgeons last entry he could also directly visualize the damaged the nerves on the exit, but they are lower trunk injuries meaning inside the cord.
  • MetalneckMetalneck Island of Misfit toysPosts: 1,364
    This link explains the where;s and whys of some of my story. http://www.spine-health.com/forum/neck-pain-cervical/history-a-pain-neck More specifically I have chronic pain in my neck and numbness - weakness in my left and sometimes right arm - hand - recently DX'd with the lumbar stuff .... pain numbness in my left leg foot ... numbness right upper leg. .... and stuff like that. Bottom line severe stenosis at c3 and herniations at L2 - 5 with rupture at L4 .... and stuff like that.

    That should give you an overview,

    Any other questions ... please ask!,

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  • How did all this begin, D? Accident?
  • MetalneckMetalneck Island of Misfit toysPosts: 1,364
    Over a 15 year span. Most of them were not my fault but you spine doesn't really care who's fault it is!

    I was boarded and collared for my last two accidents- car(s) were totaled in both cases.

    Neck issue are late effect of multiple MVA's (motor vehicle accidents) - back is recent discovery (Accident October of 2010).

    Bad neck pain started in 2003 - first surgery 2006 (failed) revision 2008 - future??

    Thank you for your interest - I would not advise a repeat of this little saga for anyone!!

    Take Care,

    Spine-health Moderator
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  • Geez, I am sorry. My neck injury is also from a MVA, t boned and inches from death, literally. The guy t boned my drivers side and impacted the back door. A split second sooner he would have hit my door and at 50 mph I likely would not be here. It's amazing what a split second can mean in a situation such as that. Death or a bad neck. I have a lumbar fusion as well but that is from a work injury. I am going on 18 years since my first spinal injury and I am only 36. Joy. But you seem to have a pretty good attitude, I envy that. I get very low a lot of the time, especially when I think of what my future may hold. I just pray for advances that make this all easier one day. Medication, surgery or whatever it may be. It seems like for the most part they are still doing the same stuff they have been doing forever, not real encouraging.
  • It sounds like you have some pressure on spinal cord in cervical area I am going through the same stuff had mva 6/25/10 car totaled had acdf 4/6/11 c3c4 but have issues from c4 to c7 not as bad as c3 c4 but I know that i will need surgery sooner or later nuero doc said will wait till is worse b4 he cuts again but my whole spine has been screwed since accident and will not get enough money for it if any. after all of the docs and atty are paid. But I have same pain as you do but mine is more steady and does not come and go as much. but can put me out of commission on bad days. hope u get better
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