Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Neck and Arm pain-please help

Hi, I am new to this site. I have a c3-4 moderate right formal disc osteophyte with spurring and disc protrusion encroaching upon c4 nerve root, and I have a c5-6 broad right protrusion touching right anterior aspect of the cord, in a position to irritate c6 nerve root.there is also a mild edema in the articulating endplated, right more than left. my pain started in my thumb and forearm on my right arm, then moved up to the outside of my arm and is also in my neck. my thumb is better. I have a large spasm in my shoulder. this has been going on for 6 months. My question is this...for those of you who have c3-4 or c5-6 issues, what exactly does the pain in your arm feel like, and what part of the arm do you feel it in? Mine feels like sore, aching muscles, and I tend to massage my forearm and upper arm to release the pain. Ice also makes it feel temporarily better. I also get this pain in my left arm periodically. I have seen numerous doctors, and some are saying that this is myofacial pain or a repetitive strain, but one Dr is saying that this is all from the c5-6 and that I need surgery. I have tried PT, rest, ice, heat, ibuprofin, muscle relaxants, nerve pain medication, massage, and I still have this aching pain in my neck down to my forearm. it's more annoying than unbearable, but I would love to know how other people would descirbe their arm pain. several Dr's told me that if this pain were from my c5-6 disc, that I would have shooting or stabbing pain, which I don't, but that one Dr believes this is all from C5-6. I had a tingling sensation only 1 or 2 times briefly in my right forearm. any input would be great. I would hate to jump to surgery if this is not needed. This has been a frusterating and overhwelming 6 months trying to get some answers and I would love to mitigate the pain. Getting different opinions from different doctors is concerning and I'm not sure which one is right.


  • Hi ALEX
    I have disc issues at c4-c6. Moderate to severe foraminal stenosis also. I had neck pain for years before any arm pain surfaced. When arm pain came along it felt sharp but not continuous in my bicep. At other times my bicep would just seem sore. Then pain moved to inside elbow and now it is in forearm. It is still not continuous and not always sharp. Hope this helps. It is hard to find info on how nerve pain feels.
  • Hi guys, ok so I had
    Hi guys, ok so I had discectmy 2 year ago on lumbar spine after 12 months horrific nerve and leg pain. It was a total success and I'm back to normal . I then became pregnant and during pregnancy I had awful neck pain and arm pain twinges. However with being pregnant I couldn't have an MRI so had to wait. The pain subsided for a while. It then returned when my baby was 6 weeks old. It was horrendous, the pain was unbearable but I saw the neuro surgeon n he suggested and MRI, which showed a prolapse disc at c6/7 I knew it was I could tell the pain... Anyway he offered surgery but I declined as I had a new Borland she was my priority. Since then ( my baby is nearly 2) I have had 4 flare ups of the neck pain arm pain numbness optical headaches, and I saw surgeon beginning of July, after another awful flare up. Hands numb durning the night etc, we discussed an acdf and he put me on his list for surgery, I got a letter to confirm it all and just told to wait until I was informed of a date for surgery. The week after I received another letter off his stating he has looked at my scan again, and feels surgery wouldn't benefit me?? I'm totally gutted and lost, he says surgery is necessary in one breath the in another says it won't help?? How can the scan change surely he can't change his mind... Please advise me guys.. I'm all geared up for surgery
  • Hi DMO,
    so would you describe your arm pain as sore muscles when it was not continuous? would anything flare it up? movement tends to flare mine up, or activities such as writing or typing. when it was sore, was in unbearable, or tolerable? did you find anything that helped you? thanks for your response.
  • Hey ALEX
    Yes I would say my arm pain feels like sore muscles. It is hard to keep arms overhead like when washing my hair. They feel tired all the time. Then occasionally I get the sharp pains in bicep, inside of elbow and forearm that feels like tendonitis. Almost anything can cause a flare up, even sleeping with neck in wrong position. I take pain meds, lyrica, and lots of advil to get through work day. I don't know how long your situation has been going on. My neck has been hurting off and on for ten years. The last two have been with arm pain. I have had three consults with neurosurgeons and all three recommend two level acdf with plate and rods. I know I will have to go under the knife soon. Don't wait to long if nerve damage is present.
    Hope this helps
  • thanks for that description. chronic pain is overwhelming, especially when Dr's have different opinions on it. I go to see an ortho spine surgeon tomorrow to get his opinion. My other Dr recommended I do yoga and accupuncture, which I have started, but I have not seen any results yet. I have not found a pain med that helps my arms yet. Advil does nothing for me. neither does nerve pain meds or muscle relaxants.
  • fins2feathersffins2feathers Posts: 3
    edited 08/13/2014 - 12:45 PM
    New Here, Just saying thanks for everyones enthusiastic approach to what we feel after an ACDF Surgery 07/22/2014
    First off, Im 51 Male, Offshore Oil Field Trash" Class A Crane Operator Do what Im told with no complaints" I had a C4 C5 fusion back in 05" very successful at that, heal & recovery time was less than 9 months @ 100% 125-250 lbs. weight lifting no problem/no pain, all muscle work-out groups, slight numbness in hands at night during sleep, Since then times have changed since I work offshore as a crane operator. My injury was simple and fortunately at home as my zero turn lawn mower got stuck in the mud, thought I was king kong and got it un-stuck, 3 days later found out I had blown C6 C7, 1 week later had the ACDF with hardware. That was three weeks ago. So far pain is left arm moderate to severe with lots of variations as the pain moves to different parts of the bicep, usually its just in the center of the bicep as a dull ache but has string like pains that run down the arm laterally to the top of the hand to just before the middle finger, first 5 days following surgery, zero pain, then I could feel it light me up! Back on the meds, since then pain the same, right turning of head/no pain, left turning of head/moderate pain, Looking up or down/major or extreme pain. Numbness and tingling at night but is subsiding as time continues. My biggest question is how long with it be this time around before I can go back to the gym, as for now, no (PT) too soon I guess! Its only been 3 weeks Will update as time continues as time is on our side the great healer" as for an answer to your question? I don't trust self diagnostics, if anyone suggest something like yoga or therapeutic cultural healing, id be the first to tell them they're crazy! go find you a good spinal surgeon, trust his or her judgment and have the flip in surgery, you will be glad you did. Do you want to spend the rest of your life in pain, or get out of it. One last bit of advice, this is not my first rodeo and I fully understand the complications and possibilities of problems associated with nerve problems. If it still hurts after your surgery, please tell your doctor the truth and write down what and where it hurts as this may and will change as the healing process is different for each of us. Telling your doctor all of the symptoms allows your doctor to better understand your ailments thus allowing the doctor to better serve you. Also by taking an active approach to (PT) physical therapy will make your healing time better. and if at any time during a (PT) session you experience pain, stop! Let the (PT) specialist know what and where its hurting, they can't do their job better if you hide anything that could potentially limit the total success of a good (PT) session. hope any or all of this info helps. Sincerely Mike
  • The pain that I feel in my arms is a lot of things at the same time sometimes. Sometimes its a tingling and burning pain. Sometimes its shooting pains and other times its throbbing like a strained muscle. It really depends on the day or what I am doing. I haven't found relief from ice or heat because it seems to make the nerves go on overdrive. My C5 and C6 discs are extruded and have fragments separated from the disc and are resting in the nerve bed in my neck. I also have bulging discs at C4 and C7.
    Tracie C
  • Thanks for all your replies. I saw an ortho spine surgeon today. He recommended a nerve root block injection, and thought surgery would be needed. He recommended the artificial disc replacement. 2 questions-my first spine Dr recommended the facet join injection, and told me to steer clear of the nerve root block, and he recommended the bone fusion surgery. can anyone tell me which injection, facet or nerve root, is beneficial, or any info on them at all? and how do you know what type or surgeon to see...neuro vs orthopedic? I live in a state with great hositals, and I am unable to even get an appointment with a neuro surgeon, but I want to make sure that ortho is the right way to go. any info on the facet and nerve block injections would be really helpful, and any insight on an artifical disc replacement vs the bone fusion surgery would also be helpful. finally, any tips on ortho vs neuro surgeons I would be appreciated. I'm a bit lost here, and very overwhelmed with all the different Dr's opinions. I am 30 years old in otherwise in good health. thanks for all the replies.
  • garyloweggarylowe Posts: 3
    edited 08/15/2014 - 4:40 PM
    I have had three back fusions one in 08,09 and 2010 from L-6, in 2012 I had a cervical neck fusion from C-5,6 and 7, now on September 2nd i am having a posterior fusion from C-5-T-2, my arm is literally killing me from the shoulder to the elbow and then across the forearm to the ring and pinkie finger, my neurosurgeon said this will be a very painful surgery, has anyone else had this surgery and was it as painful as my doc said it will be? Thanks for any help
  • Sorry i meant to say from L1-6
  • My last MRI showed pseudomeningoceles at C5-T1, as well as bones spurs and foraminal narrowing at these levels. I know they are pockets of fluid, but there is very little else about them on the internet. Has anyone else had them and did they require treatment?
  • Alex C.AAlex C. Posts: 10
    edited 08/18/2014 - 9:34 AM
    Hello everyone! I hope you are doing well, or as well as they can be in situations like this. Let me start off by saying I am a 21 year old female, 5'0, 110. I have moderate to severe (worse as it goes down) congenital lumbar spinal stenosis of my L1-S1 from being born 3 months premature. I also have wedge fractures of my T11/12. As a teenager, I always had lower back pain but thought nothing of it because I was a cheerleader from an early age. It all started in May of this year, when I had my second uti in like 7 months with absolutely no symptoms. Was in the hospital for 4 days where they didn't take X-rays (had muscle spasms, horrible back pain and such) because they were afraid to expose me to radiation at such a young age..wtf?? Went to my PCP two weeks later for a follow up, told her I had lower back pain and she ordered tests. I have had X-rays, and MRIS done of my ls and came back with the results being congenital lss, retrolisthesis/spondylosis (depending on who you ask!) and gallstones! No gallbladder, got it taken out about a month ago. I had to wait for pt, because my abs were super weak. I started physical therapy but it hurts to do certain things since I am also experiencing sciatica in my butt down to my lower thighs, just above the knee caps in both legs, since early June. As of now, I can barely stand for 10 minutes and walking for more than that is a killer. Now onto the neck pain: for the past month, I've been having moderate neck pain and swelling. I noticed one day when I sitting down and it just started to swell. I thought it could be from my back, having nerve compression and everything but then around my C6-7 started to hurt. Not hurt like ow I scraped my knee but ow I'm about to pee my pants because of the pain. Speaking of peeing, I also have had slight urinary retention (not good because I've had a kidney infection) for about a month but couldn't get into see a urologist, though I should be going next week. I have had tingling and pain radiate down my right arm into my hand and into my 2-4 fingers. I also feel very weak when walking up or down the stairs which is most likely from my back. My arms have felt extremely tired just doing simple things (washing the dishes, picking up my cat, brushing my hair) and I'm not sure what to do for the pain because NSAIDs don't work. I had a cervical MRI done on Saturday (8/16/14) and hopefully I get the results soon. I also had a brain MRI done as well to rule out MS as I have tremors in my hands, brisk lower extremity reflexes, a gait imbalance, and horrible fatigue. I've gotten blood work done to test for Lyme disease, hyperthyroidism, etc and I'm waiting for the results from those as well but this has been pretty stressful. I've been on medical leave from my job working as a sales associate at a video game store since May; I stand on my feet and it's not possible for me to sit down. I really hope I can find some kind of relief. Normally I'm all for getting over pain with out opioids but the pain got so bad in my back and neck tonight, I took a slow release (12 hour) OxyContin to take the edge off. I currently feel the pain declining but it's still there, just not a 9 on the pain scale. If anyone could give me advice on what I should do, alternative treatments and such, that would be great! Sorry for the long rant and thanks to everyone in advance!!!

    Alex C.
Sign In or Register to comment.