Hello Everyone, I'm new on here. I have been reading off and on for awhile now and am ready (comfortable) to join in. I'm almost 38, woman. I was hit by a Chevy Tahoe 4 years ago. My life hasn't been the same since. I had never had back/neck issues until this. My youngest daughter was barely 2 years old when I could no longer carry her, lift her onto my lap, put her in an out a cart... and so many other limitations. Since I have had ongoing lower back issues; sciatica, little limp, my feet and ankle gets so painful and freezes up, persistent back ache. After the incident my focus and dr's focus was on my back. I had a couple ruptured discs. Was seen by my primary, ortho, neuro, PT, and pain dr's. Not to mention ER a couple times. We were able to "manage" my back pain with PT, neurontin 300mg 3X's day, flexirl 10mg, meloxicam 15mg, norco. I had a couple epidurals, all it did was irritate the area and bothered me more than it helped. IMO I also lost 20 which I had gained in the beginning after my accident. (I couldn't even sit down for about a month let alone any other physical exercise) I still feel almost constant pain, but I'm used to it. I get bothered by the flare ups more than anything.
After all my focus on my back, unknowingly I was ignoring a bigger issue with my neck. I had been having neck and shoulder pain for months. It would first come and go. After awhile, the pain/discomfort began to come around more often and last for a longer time. I kept thinking it was a kink in my neck or from stress. God knows I was under a lot of stress. One morning I woke up and was completely numb in my left arm. At first it was paralyzed like. Freaked me out to say the least. Went to ER, they checked me in while they ran a series of tests. The originally thought I had MS, until MRI showed disc herniation in my neck. I don't remember the terminology but they came at me suggesting aggressive treatment as almost the only thing that may help if I wanted to avoid nerve damage, if none had been done yet. My Primary was awesome. He had me do PT, kept monitoring me, encouraged relaxation techniques to open up joints, and relieve stress. I ended up having ACDF June 2014. Been great since. (my neck, my back pain has never let up) Now for the past month and a half my right shoulder, arm, wrist, hand has begun hurting. This time it's worse than my left side ever felt. Major headaches, feels like my skin from my chin and ear area and down is being pulled taut. Right arm hurts so bad. Makes me cringe to grip anything. Will randomly get pins and needles, shoulder feels squeezing pain. Went to my pain dr, frantic thinking that maybe I'm having hardware issues since my swallowing lately has seemed to become more difficult too. Had an MRI on Saturday 12/12/15. Dr apt today and results are C3-C4 Mild DDD with broad based disc bulge and C4-C5 Mild DDD with mild broad based disc bulge in conclusion Mild upper cervical spondylosis.
My dr wants to treat it with higher dose of neurontin 600mg/3x's a day, and adding tramidol to my list of meds as well as epidural shots.
I need help, opinions, experience, suggestions. Isn't this all going to mask what's there? I'm miserable. I feel worse than I did before my surgery. Shouldn't I have at least some PT? Or is this nothing to worry about and I'm making a big deal? Also, my xrays show that the hardware in me is not flush. It's at an angle. Is this ok/normal?
There are no medical professionals on the forum side of this site. Therefore everything you read is based on the personal experiences and/or research done by the individual member. Comments should never be taken as pure medical facts. You need to discuss this with your doctor. They are the only ones that can provide you with detailed information about you, the patient.
Liz, Spine-health Moderator