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Neck and shoulder pain

Hello, I am sunshine looking for help figuring out what is wrong with my neck.
A chiropractor pulled on my head not giving me any warning. This happened ten months ago,after a month of trying to get past the injury, I spent 2 months going to a different chiropractor, lately I have been to 8 physical therapy treatments. Today I went to a sports medicine doctor. I have never been so disappointed as I do not feel like I even got a descent exam . I go for an MRI next week.

here are my symptoms
X-rays show nothing, pain from where head sits on the spine down between the shoulder blades, nerves are pinched from back to chest down under the right arm, the muscles in neck are tight as ropes, getting cold or using my muscles make them tighten up so tight my head pounds so bad I could cry. By the end of the day I can hardly hold my head up. Looking up at anyone for more than a minute becomes painful. Looking to the right or left for long periods of time also causes pain.
Please help...


  • Hi Sunshine,

    First let me say welcome to spine-health. Have a look around and you will find others whom feel the same as yourself and are going through the something. I think what happened at the doctor today, was very common. He listened to your description of the pain, and what your symptoms are and the obvious was to send you for a MRI. Be thankful for that MRI. If you look at a dermatone chart I am sure you will see the exact line of the pain your having. The nerves coming off the cervical(neck) spine, go to the shoulders, arms and hands. Given you had been at a chiro and they adjusted your neck and you got the pain from there and it has gone on this long a MRI would be in order at this time. The doctor needs the MRI to look at the disc in the cervical spine to see if something is compressing a nerve. Once he/she has the results of the MRI depending on what it says, you might get more of a exam. I should say if it is negative then they will begin to look elsewhere for the issues.

    You can find in our video section a video of the spine and how it works, which is worth the watch. It is animated so it is not gross or anything as are all the videos in that section. You can also watch the video on a herniated disc in the cervical spine and it will become clear why a MRI was ordered. A mri will show the disc more clearly as the are soft tissue. A disc is like a jelly donut, in that it has fluid inside of it. If that disc begins to leak it puts pressure on the nerves thus leading to referred pain. Meaning pain that goes away from the original injury area such as the shoulders, arms and hands. He may have done some test without you even knowing it, such as when he/she shook your hand, and so on. Or just looking at how you were sitting and the direction of your cervical spine.

    Also just to let you know in the FAQ section there is some links to meeting with a spinal surgeon and 38 question to ask a doctor about surgery. I am not suggesting that you need surgery, but for your follow-up visit you could have 2 sets of questions ready. One if they said you need surgery and then the second if not. But be prepared for your follow-up. We all know that we get limited time with a doctor, so we need to be prepared to make use of the time we get. The may suggest injections, so you can also read on epidural injections and watch the video as well. If none of that is needed your at least prepared.

    Anyway just thought I would stop by and welcome you to spine-health. If I can be of any assistance don't hesitate to pm me. Take care and keep us posted on what you find out.
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