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Herniated Cervical Disc

Ok, here's my story. I power lifted and bodybuilt for a long time. Well one day after the gym I woke up in horrendous painin my shoulder and down my arm. 5 days laid up in bed on hydrocodone and the pain went away. Honestly haven't felt pain there since. During that time I got an MRI and they saw that I had arthritis in my neck from the lifting and possible DDD(I'm 29). They saw that there was a protrusion on the left side just touching the nerve, barely, no nerve damage and the signals were fine, all nerves and spine were the correct size. He said he didn't recommend surgery but epidurals and I haven't been back due to money. Now, the weakness in my arm was bad, from my shoulder being the worst spot all the way down to my thumb. I had trouble holding anything and raising my wrist, I could barely use the arm. Now, a lot of my strength has come back, my wrist is getting my stronger, grip is getting better, numbness is gone in my thumb and forearm but still some in my shoulder area but I noticed that's even getting better. I'm still weak when I pull with that arm but not as much. This was all in July of 2013 and this is where I'm at today. I took all that time off from the gym but I'm working out again very carefully and very lightly. For anyone that has any experience, does it sound like I could make a full recovery without any medical help, even after so long of a time, I'm improving.
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Comments

  • It sounds like you pinched a nerve at some point, given the numbness ......this does take time to recover from because nerves only grow at a rate of about 1 mm per month, so depending on the length of the damage and the extent of it, determines how long it takes to recover.
    It sounds like you were very lucky in that whatever you did, didn't result in further problems. I would strongly suggest to you to be careful regarding the weight lifting and the workouts and build up very gradually......
    DDD is a normal, common finding for most people.......if you are over the age of 21, you will have some extent of it, as it is part of the aging process for we humans. In some people it can be a concern, especially if there is extensive drying of the discs.
  • Yeah I figured I was lucky and the doc told me it wasn't terrible but was herniated. I had those initial 5 days of pain that kept me in the bed with my arm tilted in just the right direction for some relief but that was it. Not a bit of pain since. I was having neck pack before to the point I couldn't turn my head, but like I said I was power-lifting at the time and figured I had just pulled a muscle in my neck. My girlfriend who is a nurse kept trying to tell me no but I didn't listen. Wish I would have. The numbness was starting to bother me but since has since started to go away, slowly, but surely. I just hope it makes a full recovery sooner rather than later. My workouts are no where near what they used to be. At the time, I was a big 300lb guy bench pressing 500lbs. It actually took trips to 4 different locations to find an MRI machine that my shoulders could get through, in the end they sedated me and forced me in. Those days are long gone and I work out at home with dumbbells and other equipment I purchased. I do not work my shoulders directly as that's how I hurt my neck to begin with and I do not dead-lift anymore. My squats are now belt squats which take all the load off my spine. Anything where I have to lay on my back, I roll up a towel and put it in the curve of my neck to alleviate that pressure. I also have the reverse curvature of my cspine. Are there any ways to correct this at home? Another thing I will be getting is a inversion table, I know that it may or may not work for me but at the price they fetch on craigslist and ebay it would be a fools move not to give it a shot and maybe help the current state of my disc. Thank you for the reply.
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