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Advice for next steps for my 16 year old daughter

Two years ago my daughter fell tumbling and suffered a severe cervical strain and upper back strain, her neck was severely overextended like a whiplash injury than a roll backwards strained the upper back as well. We had MRIs, X-rays at the time and they determined soft tissue injury and strained ligaments. Two years later of chronic pain, several bouts of PT to improve muscle stiffness etc., and now she has a disturbing new symptom - numbness and tingling in hand. We are now seeing nuerologist who ordered MRI to rule our disc herniation, etc. -- MRI was normal. Then nuerologist ordered nerve conduction study to rule out brachial plexus- also came out normal. Physical therapist suggested flex extension xray, but ortho doc we were seeing before nuerologist waved away this suggestion saying he doesn't think she has any cervical instability. Should nuero doc check this now? Does a normal MRI rule out cervical instability?

Her symptoms of numb hand continue, along with painful neck and shoulder muscles, frequent headaches beginning in back of her head, vertigo when she turns her head (she's also had an MRA to rule out any complications of the vertigo) and she has a grinding neck popping sound when she turns her head a certain way. She also has limited range of motion when she turns her head, despite much PT.

She also has a knot in her muscle between her shoulder and her neck and when the PT presses on this it makes tingling worse. Wouldn't an MRI show this though?

My heart breaks for her to see her suffering. Any suggestions for us for us? Thank you.


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • with the findings of the exams and tests that you have had regarding your daughter's injury, and she is exhibiting new symptoms, then a consultation with another board certified neurosurgeon and/or orthopedic spine surgeon would be my recommendation .
    What does the neuro you are seeing now suggest may be the problem? What did his physical examination of her show? Is she sharing all of the symptoms that she is experiencing with him? If not, make sure that she is, otherwise, leaving out certain things can complicate a clear clinical picture.
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