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Unbearable pain after chiropractic neck adjustment

zaxatronzzaxatron Posts: 10
edited 10/09/2013 - 6:03 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical

I had a bike fall a couple of months ago and been getting physio to treat my whiplash.

Also had a ct scan which showed some herniation at nerves c5/c6.

About 2 weeks ago my nephew told me to see his chiropractor because he believes that he was so good that he was fixed.

Therefore I had a neck adjustment last Friday and another adjustment on Monday.

After the first adjustment (she made my neck crack) I felt worse that I could not sleep.

Then on Monday I saw the head male chiropractor and told him the I was very sore after Friday work and he suggested he do one.

I tell you what, since I have gone home I cannot sleep in any fashion, I feel pain shooting down my neck then in both shoulders pulsating, into the arms, pain into the hips, buttocks and back of the femur.

Occasionally I feel pain going through my left hand fingers. The arms are weak and there is a lot of pain within the shoulders, through the arm bone.

I struggle to walk, or get down to sit, or get up due to the constant pain.

I don't want to go back to him anymore.

What do you think has happened? Made my disc prolapse worse, inflamed the c5/c6/c7 nerves?

It has been 3 days of hellish pain, will this improve?

To manage it I took Tramal, Lyrica, but can still feel the pain a bit.

The shoulder and the neck feels like it is cramping, spasms.

I am so upset with my self for seeing this chiro.

I hope there is someone that can give me some clues, but I will still go a see a professional.





  • Anytime there is a suspected herniation, chiro should not make adjustments because they can make things worse. A ortho spine MD or a Neurosurgeon should be able to help. You could ask your PT if you don't know where to start looking. Hopefully it is just temporary inflammation and you feel better soon.
  • necksoup said:
    Anytime there is a suspected herniation, chiro should not make adjustments because they can make things worse. A ortho spine MD or a Neurosurgeon should be able to help. You could ask your PT if you don't know where to start looking. Hopefully it is just temporary inflammation and you feel better soon.
    Hi Necksoup,
    thanks for your reply. I should have known better.

    The chiro took some xrays himself that showed some prolapse in C5/C7 discs.

    I don't know a colleague at work told me to try a chiro and I did.

    It has been 6 days with this horrible inflammation and it is not improving.

    I hope rest will eventually help.

    I have to go to work because I have a family and run out of sick leave this year because I have been very ill with other things.

    Waking is stressful and painful. Also this is enhanced by the fact I have a swollen right knee that was found to have ab acl sprain, small meniscus tear and large baker's cyst.

    I am tired of this and want to get well soon.

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 10,298
    is identified, you want to stay away from chiropractor's manipulation and adjustments That type of treatment can cause additional and serious problems
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • zaxatronzzaxatron Posts: 10
    edited 10/12/2013 - 12:31 PM
    are not improving.
    I was so sore yesterday that I went to the emergency department of the St. Vincent hospital here in Melbourne Australia.
    I could hardly walk, sit, get up. I saw a physiotherapist who did some gentle manipulation and it helped a bit.
    At that stage I was on drugs with Lyrica and Tramal in my body.

    The physio told me that I will recover and was surprised why the hospital that did not check my neck with another CT scan and compare it to the one previous before the chiropractic neck adjustment to see if there were any changes in my neck.

    This morning I got up without drugs in my body with excruciating pain (feels like very bad cramps) in my neck, left/right shoulders and arms up to my elbow, in my buttocks, back of my upper leg. I needed my wife to pull me up from bed to go toilette and then I had to slowly lower my body to seat on the toilette seat because I had pain in my buttocks, hips and arms.

    This is not normal. What is going on?

    I went to see my private physiotherapist, he did not recommend anything apart from rest and exercises for my legs ( because I also have a sprained right knee with a small meniscus tear), the hospital told me to be positive and get physio done on it, in the meantime I am having extreme pain and am very limited in my movements.

    I cannot drive a car, cannot go to work, difficulty having breakfast, going to the loo, it is hard to lift my arms to dry myself after a shower with the towel, cannot put on my socks, jumper ( unless someone else does it for me)

    I give up considering that even the medical profession does not give you a prognosis of what is really going on.

    Has anyone heard of a condition similar to mine where your body goes into spasm nearly everywhere, after a chiropractic neck adjustment?
    Are there any side effects of Lyrica and Tramal that may cause spasms?

    CT Scan cervical spine report before chiropractor adjust my neck (pretty long)

    Patient: Zaxatron
    Birthdate: 08/11/1956 Sex : M Medicare Number :
    Your Reference: Lab Reference: XXXXX

    Laboratory : xxxxxxxx
    Addressee : Zaxatron's doctor

    Name of Test: CT CERVICAL SPINE
    Requested: 20/08/2013 Collected: 20/08/2013 Reported : 20/08/2013 00 : 00

    Zaxatron's doctor
    Patient Name:
    Zaxatron D.o.B . : 08-11 -1956 , PID : XXXXX

    Procedure Date: 20 August 2013 Report Date: 20 August 2013


    Clinical Notes:
    Left arm weakness following a bicycle accident March 2013 , overseas , to rule out nerve
    compression .

    Findings :
    Multiplanar images are obtained . The alignment of the spine is satisfactory.
    Cl/2 level:
    There is evidence of degenerative change at the atlantodental articulation, but there is no
    spinal canal encroachment .
    C2/3 level :
    No relevant finding .
    C3/4 level :
    The disc space is narrowed with Schmorl ' s node . No disc protrusion . Uncovertebral joint
    degenerative change is present. This is associated with mild neural exit foramen encroachment
    C4/5 level :
    The disc space is narrowed with small osteophytes . There is a mild and broadbased right
    paracentral disc protrusion. Uncovertebral joint degenerative change is present. This is
    associated with moderately severe right-sided neural exit foramen narrowing and mild narrowing on
    the left side.
    C5/6 level:
    Disc space is markedly narrowed and there is broadbased central disc protrusion with a small
    focus of disc calcification in the left paracentral region . At this stage, there is relatively
    mild spinal canal encroachment. Bilateral uncovertebral joint degenerative change is present.
    This is associated with relatively mild bilateral neural exit foramen encroachment at this stage.
    C6/7 level:
    The disc space is narrowed with minor osteophytes. There is a minimal central disc bulge .
    Bilateral uncovertebral joint degenerative change is present. This is associated with moderately
    severe bilateral neural exit foramen narrowing.

    Patient Name:
    Procedure Date: 20 August 2013 Report Date: 20 August 2013

    Thanks and regards

  • patrain17ppatrain17 Ottawa area, CanadaPosts: 106
    My chiro could've killed me without even knowing why. Never again! I suggest you do the same.

    I hope you find away to relieve your pain. But please be careful!

    Take care!
  • patrain17 said:
    My chiro could've killed me without even knowing why. Never again! I suggest you do the same.

    I hope you find away to relieve your pain. But please be careful!

    Take care!
    Thanks for you good advice. I will never see a chiro again! I suffered too much so far.
  • Your post made me cringe!
    You poor dear
    Ayyyyyyyyy you would think that the chiro would know better?

    Get to an ortho doc ASAP

    maybe even the ER??????

  • AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,607
    edited 10/12/2013 - 1:35 PM
    Are you able to see a spinal specialist that is not a physiotherapist or chiro? They are limited in the scope of practice. Look on the www and contact Drs in your area. Let them know of the results of your CT and see if they can evaluate your situation.I have been in the pain you have been in and I would NOT let anyone touch me, it hurt too much and that is not the pain in the phrase "the more the pain, the more you gain". I think that is a stupid saying anyhow.
  • Hi am from Aus too. Melb originally 'til I was around 20, now Brisbane so at least I have a good education - you'll get the joke. Noticed you had a bike accident overseas. To cut to the chase I was misdiagnosed for nearly 8 years after a serious motorbike accident which 80% wedge crushed my T5 vertebrae on the right hand side.

    They did not make a correct diagnosis, firstly they didn't put me in a cast which apparently they do now and my T5 has healed in a really bad position. I have had incessant pain since the accident, and have only now discovered it was my T4 that was compensating for my severely crushed T5, but the T4 did not show up on a prone MRI.

    I did not have a weight bearing MRI. I think there are only a couple in Australia and none in Brisbane, but luckily for you there is one in Melbourne. It makes common sense to me that if you are lying down your body will go back into place but if you are standing in a weight bearing position they should be able to see more easily. A lot of people don't agree with me but this is what I truly believe.

    I have researched this a fair bit and you can see the difference on You Tube. If I had been diagnosed correctly in the first place, it would have made life so much easier as I eventually had to make major changes to my life. I just looked in Melbourne and you can get one in Brighton which will take Medicare so won't cost anything. Have a look on You tube for the difference between standing or sitting and prone MRI's. Also Fonar have reaseach and results for spinal injuries, and they make both kinds of MRI's, so the results should be accurate. If you PM me (just press the PM button under my name after you log in) I can give you the links.

    If it was me I would go and get a standing MRI - it will cost you nothing. The physio I have in Brisbane is the first one to pick up my T4 and she has taped my T4 and shoulder back into the correct mechanical place. It was immediate pain relief, She tapes because my body is used to it being in the incorrect mechanical position for 8 years, if it is not taped my muscles just spasm it straight back out again. I cannot tell you how pi**ed off I am - incessant unnecessary pain for 8 years, and more damage - I even had to give up my job of around 25 years as it involved so much travel which I love but could not keep it up. All the degrees and studying for nothing.

    Now I am on opoids and muscle relaxants. Another thing I eventually found out was that the opoids didn't work without the muscle relaxants.I don't think they have given you muscle relaxants. I am on Rivrotril which is supposedly non addictive so I would certainly try to get a muscle relaxant - it made an incredible difference to my pain levels. Only took them 7 years to work that out, I was in so much incessant pain I didn't realise. Another good thing to do is to take someone with you to explain the pain if you can - when you are in excruciating pain you cannot do it by yourself.

    Also if you have a look at the Dermatone chart on Sandi's avatar or on from the web - there is another one on this site too you can see where the pain radiates, so you can tell which part of your spine may be damaged. There is also an MD rating site and you can see the good orthopeadiic surgeons and neurosurgeons in Melbourne. There is also one who advertises on this site from Melbourne so I think any specialist who takes the time to read patients experiences must be pretty dedicated.

    I really don't want anyone else to go through the hell I have been through. So please try and get it properly diagnosed from the start. My injury is very rare which I did not realise until I did a lot of research, I am very lucky to be walking, so none of the Dr's had seen it before , they just didn't bother to tell me.

    Hopefully for you it is muscle strain, but they know a lot more about the cervical spine so if it is more serious you have a great chance of being fixed. My ex partner broke his neck playing rugby, it nearly severed his spinal chord and they caught it just in time, almost 20 years ago, had an operation and has said he has never had any trouble after it.

    Good luck my friend - please try and get an early diagnosis, and if I still lived in Melbourne I would be in Brighton in a flash.
  • zaxatronzzaxatron Posts: 10
    edited 10/14/2013 - 6:56 AM
    thoracic spine pain said:
    Hey another Aussie - born at St Vinnies. Yes I did have a very bad push bike accident in Italy on the 3rd of August this year
    Hi Thoracic Spine,
    How are you?

    I was not actually born in St Vincent's hospital but is a country hospital in Broadford Australia, north of Melbourne.
    Then I went back to Italy when I was 5 years of age, did all my schools there and came back in 75.

    Thanks for all the good advice so far.

    Yesterday I made it a commitment to see my GP and get another CT Scan of my neck to see if there is any damage after the chiropractor adjusted my neck on Friday 4th and Monday 14th (no neck adjustment this day but leg and lower spine)

    I am still upset with myself for making such a decision.

    Here is how my pain goes.

    Once I get up I am rather sore all over, then I take 2 Neurofen that take away the inflammation quite a bit.

    Then I can sort of manage a day at work.

    This is what aggravates my problem:

    When I go to bed, I am not using a pillow because it makes it worse. Therefore my head and neck are laying on the mattress, which is has a pillow top.

    As I lay in that position for 4/5 hours (with the help of Tramal and Lyrica to sleep, my neck starts to get very stiff and very painful. Obviously some disc is pressing on nerves and spinal cord, then the pain starts to throb, hurt, the shoulders star becoming cramped, the pain goes to the upper arms, some of the lower spine starts to hurt also, pain is being generated at the hips, cramping the muscles there.

    The pain is so strong that it wakes you up. Then you try to get up to get off the bed, now it is difficult because your arms have become weak due to the pain.Your legs also feel weak because the hip pain is radiating down into the legs.

    Once I take some good anti inflammatory and change position, better standing or a comfortable Ikea chair, then the pain starts to ease off, then you are able to sleep maybe another 2 hours on and off, get up make breakfast and push yourself to go to work.

    I am not able to take anymore sickies because I used them all and I do not think that taking too much time off would impress my employers.

    I am in IT support and this field is volatile and even though I am very competent, I do not want to expose myself.
    These are the sacrifices you make to look after your family.

    But I have to get better. I am worried why this problem has not improved since nearly 2 weeks.
    Soon I will be seeing my GP to discuss the results of my latest neck CT scans.

    I am fearful that they will find something that may now require surgery to rectify . I was hoping to improve with physiotherapy, nothing too invasive.

    Also back in 2002 I had a Nucleotomy performed in Germany to decompress the disc at L4/L3 because this technology was not available in Australia then.

    I cannot believe that you place your trust in medical professionals and they can nearly kill you!

    Not sure how many more days, weeks or months I have to put up with this pain.

    Currently I am not able to sleep properly, which fatigues me a lot.

    Turning the clock just 3 months I was a very fit jogger, cyclist and personal body building.

    I could jog anything between 6 and 24 km, cycle between 70 and 200 km, bench press my body weight then 75Kg. Now I am down to 72 kg, because I cannot excercise due to the pain.

    Sorry for the whine but I had let it out.


  • I was born at St Vinnies - sorry didn't mean you. What I am suggesting is that you have a standing/sitting MRI in Brighton now as I think it will give a clearer picture. Look at the dermatone chart and you will be able to tell which of your vertebrae are involved.

    I have a totally different injury to you so I don't know anything about cervical. They normally do MRI's after 5 so after work, would look up the place in Brighton. You need a referral from your GP.

    Seeing you know pain you know how important it is to get a correct diagnosis as soon as possible. Hopefully it is just muscle damage if Neurofen helps, but I think the only way you are going to find out is if your CT scan shows nothing go and have a standing/ sitting weight bearing MRI.

    Sorry about the joke about schools. Didn't realise you were educated in Italy. It's a Melbourne thing, an old joke about the state you were born in. Can't remember the whole joke sorry.

    Read some of the posts on the cervical spine forum and you may find someone with the same experience as you.

  • zaxatronzzaxatron Posts: 10
    edited 10/15/2013 - 12:12 PM
    thoracic spine pain said:
    I was born at St Vinnies - sorry didn't mean you.
    That is OK.

    One thing that annoys me here is that you go and see a physio, a doctor etc and they are not proactive, at least the ones that I have met so far.

    I would have liked an explanation as to why my body is cramping all over, what is causing this, I do not have any answers yet.

    I also asked a doctor to prescribe a muscle relaxant (Rivrotril the one you suggested) and he told me I did not need it.
    I am the one with the pain not him.

    Do you have any idea how much a weight bearing MRI may cost?

    On top of all my physical problems I am also financially stressed!



  • thoracic spine painthoracic spine pain Posts: 566
    edited 10/16/2013 - 1:21 PM
    When I looked up the weight bearing MRI in Brighton they say they take Medicare. So it shouldn't cost you anything.

    I would ring them and ask, because I have never had an MRI that was covered under Medicare but now have discovered places that will do it for free under my Health Insurance. i have had a lot of MRI's over 8 years so I have spent a couple of thousand bucks that if I had been more proactive didn't need to spend.

    I don't know why the Dr wouldn't give you a muscle relaxant - maybe you shouldn't have asked for it by name because they hate you telling them that you have researched - and I'm not a Dr just saying what helped me. Maybe if you told him you have muscle spasms he would have recommended a muscle relaxant himself. They don't like people who are not Dr's recommending anything. Can't really blame them.

    Bit like work really - if you have an idea you need to make them think that they thought of it. Then they will put it in place and get praised themselves for the idea - that's how I used to work - make them think it was their idea and then praise them for implementing it.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 10,298
    I have always stated that the two should never met. Each have their own disciplines regarding treatment. But I always believe that chiropractors should NOT do any work on a person, once that person has been identified with real spinal issues.

    The 'manipulation' techniques of many chiropractors could cause a lot of additional problems and pain.

    Just do some research on chiropractors and spinal specialists to see what kind of treatments they can do and should not do.
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • zaxatronzzaxatron Posts: 10
    edited 10/18/2013 - 8:26 AM
    agree you there!

    Since the 4th of October I have not been able to sleep properly. I wake up with very painful spasms of the neck, shoulders (left and right), buttocks, hips and back of the legs. Even with pain killers I feel the pain.

    The worst part is if I try to roll in my bed or get off my bed, my shoulders are so sore that they prevent me from exerting force with my arms to push up my trunk to get out of bed. I had to ask my wife to pull me up.

    If I on the floor lying down, I need help to get up.

    My physio tells me, that since I already had a disc prolapse at C5/C6, the neck adjustment has aggravated it.
    Will this inflammation go down eventually? How long do I have to put up with it?

    I am afraid, that my only option would be surgery, which I would really like to avoid due to the risks involved with any surgery.

    Yesterday at work I was talking to a supervisor and suddenly I felt an electric shock shooting from my neck all the way down to the left foot in the Achille's tendon. It was painful and it lasted about 30 seconds till I moved my neck in a different direction. Weird!

    This shows you how connected the nerves are to the other nerves in the body.

    I feel that the chiropractor that performed the adjustment, should be liable for her actions. Otherwise you pay for a professional to help you, then your quality of life dramatically gets worse with no idea when this is going to end, and the chiropractor gets away with it!

    I am not sure what the law prescribes here in Australia for such cases.


  • Chiropractic did xrays found all this stuff to begin with. Was seeing her twice a week but kept getting worse. By the time I saw spine doc was a total mess. Then he starts. Then he didn't want chiropractic messing with neck..

    For 6 months I was so sick. Finally no money. Did not go to chiropractic. Things settled down. Have been to her twice n 6 months an was not sick. If had money would see her once a month. But really believe it was all to much in the beginning.

    Understand what she was doing but. Was too sick for it at that time.
  • poor people that suffer with our health because we cannot afford better care, medical.

    My wife keeps telling me that money is not everything, but if I did have more money I would go straight to the top clinic for this type of thing.

    In Melbourne we have the Epworth hospital with some of the best medical professionals in Australia.

    Since yesterday my neck pain has increased making my arms totally weak due to the pain.

    I am cramping all over. My doctor has suggested to increase my dose of Lyrica that somehow help a little bit.

    I think the the prolapsed disc is putting a lot of pressure on my spinal cord causing all these spasms.

    It would be good if I could see my physio every second day, but cannot. Just here in silence putting up with the suffering.

    If this does not improve it could affect my ability to go to work. I do not want to lose my job.

    I am 57 and it is very difficult to get employed in your fifties, even if you a excellent in your field.

    In the mean time I have the option to pray God and hopefully I will get better.

  • I turn 58 next month. Tried for 2 years get different kind work. Nobody called me.

    I'm on indigent care now. Don't have money to get "Obama care". And think I will b fined for not getting it..
  • AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,607
    edited 10/19/2013 - 11:59 AM
    I use to think if I could see my physio more I would feel better, but going more seemed to make me more aggrevated, I think once a week/every 2 weeks is good and inbetween I do the exercises I can at home.
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