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Newly dx'd Congentital cervical stenosis. Help please!

BelievegoodBBelievegood Posts: 1
edited 10/05/2014 - 8:22 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I have recently been diagnosed. Sort of scared. I haven't been able to sit down for a very long time. Or rather I can only sit for a minute before I get pounding headaches as it feels that my neck is jamming up into my head. It all started with upper back spasms because I was sitting in strange positions for a while as I was writing. I had to sit in the strange positions because regular sitting was too painful. And that pain truly felt like my spine was compressing and pushing into my head and therefore the headaches started. I've tried different injections through my back doctor, but none have worked and they're still trying to figure out the actual cause of everything even though my MRI showed congenital cervical stenosis. By cause, I mean whether it's facet mediated or nerve mediated etc. I have had muscle twitching before and my hands, arms, legs . This morning I awoke to my left hand twitching and my left arm tingling and my left hand tingling. It's still going on. My stenosis has been diagnosed as moderate to severe and certain parts of my neck.

I would be so grateful for any advice, thoughts, knowledge from anyone on this forum about things that have worked to stop this pain and give me the ability to sit and live like a normal person again. It's strange because some days I can sit for a while in certain chairs and it doesn't even bother me and other days I sit down at a desk chair in within 30 seconds that jamming through my head feeling starts again and then my head started throbbing. I, of course, don't want to have surgery because it's scary and it's not an assured way to heal this. And I know there are complications for some. Anything would help. As I sit here my left hand won't stop tingling. Thank you!


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • I was diagnosed with severe congenital spinal stenosis levels C3-C7 in 2009. Without surgery to give the spinal cord more
    "space" (decompression), I would have had 1) progressive permanent damage to the spinal cord as long as it was compressed and 2) significant risk of paralysis if I fell or was rear-ended while driving. In fact I do have permanent damage that occurred before the diagnosis and surgery. I am sharing this not to scare you but instead to encourage you to not rule out surgical solutions. Stenosis of this type cannot be fixed with therapy, medication, or injections. Feel free to PM me if I can be of any help.
  • sandisandi Posts: 6,343
    edited 10/06/2014 - 6:58 PM
    congenital stenosis? What was his recommendation? While no one really wants to have to decide to undergo spine surgery, there are times when not doing it puts your spine at risk of permanent injury.
    Leaving the canal or the nerve roots compressed too long can result in damage to the nerves involved, whether it be the nerve roots or the canal.
    I would strongly suggest that you consult with at least two board certified spine surgeons to see what they recommend and why and ask what the risks are if you don't have surgery.
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