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C4 & C5 "naturally" fused, chronic neck pain and headaches. Effective remedies?

astrostlaastrostl Posts: 3
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:58 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Mid-thirties male. Got rear-ended about 15 years ago, which had me in a bed for quite a bit. Since then, especially as I've aged, I've had increasing bouts of neck pain and headaches. Sometimes the neck pain is of a more chronic variety, lasting for many days, and others it is an acute thing from a common task (as simple as turning my head sharply) which leaves my head immobilized with pain for a few days. Both tend to cause headaches, sometimes extreme.

I had things checked out, and it turns out that a couple vertebrae - C4 & C5, IIRC - are fused. I don't know if accident trauma can cause that. Maybe I was born that way. Doesn't matter much now, I suppose. C3 is bulging a bit because of the stress. Doctors commented that, based on the x-rays, that they would expect me to be in nonstop severe pain, which thankfully isn't the case. My quality of life is seriously impacted by this, though.

After this intro - is there a list around here of what other c-spine fusers have found effective in terms of pain management? I work with computers all day, then spend lots of recreational time on them. No physical exercise to speak of. I'm open to yoga, weights, whatever. I've been advised that they could fuse C4 & C3, but that it would likely cause a chain reaction (with C2 bulging and eventually needing to be fused). What I'd prefer to do is not dope myself into oblivion or get surgery, manage it with external physical measures, and hope for something magical like stem cell treatments to mature.


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