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Arthritis C1-C3 since 16, now 25 with muscle spasms?

HaloKitty2332HHaloKitty2332 Posts: 4
edited 01/28/2016 - 8:05 PM in Neck Pain: Cervical
When I was 16 years old I got diagnosed with severe rheumatoid arthritis. During that time, the facets (or joints) in my upper neck were also affected. The inflammation was great, and faded out my jawline insomuch so that when I wore loose clothing people thought I was fat...when in reality... I was 5'2" weighing 92ilbs, nearing anorexic because all the pain killed my appetite.

The inflammation in my neck went away when I was 19, and with it, came the muscle spasms. On a day to day basis, I notice that mostly it's the sternocleidomastoid that will spontaneously contract while at rest. The spasms never happen while I'm in motion, intentionally moving my muscles. That being said, symptoms worsen when I sit for long hours. However, they don't worsen sitting for long hours anywhere near as bad when I lay down to sleep at night. This is the killer!

Occasionally throughout the day I have some other symptoms linked to my neck and muscle spasms also. The first being that when I tilt my head the wrong way, I feel pressure that radiates to the back of my eyeballs deep inside my head. The second: I may yelp out too, so my symptoms appear very tic-like. However, the spontaneous sounds I make are linked directly to my diaphram forcing a hiccup....if you will. Sometimes it's very painful, and while trying to sleep I sometimes just yell in pain instead. Not that I care, my whole bodies in pain...but.... One thing that happens ONLY WHEN I TRY TO SLEEP is spasms of the semispinallis (muscle along the spine that goes from the cervicle area of the neck to about the mid back). I normally don't think about it, or even remember it happens, until I try to sleep...like tonight. (I'm typing this at midnight. BLEH! Can't sleep)
Oh! And yes, I can't turn my head left to right without resistance when I do it slowly. If I do it quickly, it's fine...but..... Hmmm

In addition, Yes, my neck has received other trauma from some hard falls that I took. And yes, I always have to pee a lot. I frequently have Dry mouth, dry eyes (especially in the morning). I do wake up frequently in the middle of the night. At least once to go pee, but not always. Never too hard to fall back asleep as long as I'm quick about it. Been that way since I got arthritis 9 years ago really. I have pain literally everywhere for that long too. Joints, muscles, everything head to toe. My body's a reck! So I don't care about the neck pain really because everything hurts. BUT......


Will I ever have to have surgery in my neck for this? And if I do have to, is there a way they can prevent the spasms from affecting the healing process? I'll probably just have to live with this....won't I? GRR!! It's so annoying!

The muscle spasms have been going on for 6 years now, and they're only getting more frequent. Not to mention affecting more muscles, as the semispinallis being affected also was a newer development from 2 years ago.

I've already seen a Neurologist. The muscle relaxers aren't working. I'm trying to get an MRI approved. But augh! I feel at a loss. What's wrong with me? What can I do to make the spasms stop?!?! THeY SUCK!!!!!!

No one on the Spine-Health patient forums is medically qualified to provide any advice. You need to discuss this with your doctor, they are the only ones that can provide you with detailed information about you, the patient. 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.

Liz, Spine-health Moderator


  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    Please take the time to read this post and refer to it when you have questions

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    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
  • I am so sorry to hear of this condition and how much it affects you. I am especially sad that you are so young and have to deal with this. Honestly though this is a tough road. No one will be able to set any accurate expectations on your symtoms. Mainly because there are so many nerves in the neck, as you probably already know, that you will get some crazy ass symtpoms (can I use the word ass on here?). The reason I know this is because I have a an undiagnosed condition and my neck muscles have been spasmed for over nine years, no joke. I have had some strange referred symtoms as the result of an undetected upper cervical injury. Bad tooth aches on the leftside where there is nothing wrong with my tooth, spasmed jaw rightside. constant neck muscles spasm, upper thorasic spams. lumbar spasms, knee pain, hip pain and even foot pain. All these come and go over short periods. So yes all of this stuff is connected through our fascia and the nerve pathways. Now the good news, you are young and your body is still producing and employing many healing techniques such as stem cells and enzymes. Modern medicine is in a revolutionary growth phase in many areas and one of those areas is regenerative medicine. So in the future you will have much better options than someone twice your age. The one thing I think medicine is lacking is much better imaging techniques for diagnostic purposes. The best we have now is an MRI. We need better. So for now keep your self as health as possible, keep moving, eat well and get the nutrition you body needs. Keep seeking information that will help you heal your mind, body and spirit.
    As far as your spasms, muscles are ignorant, they do what the nerves tell them to do. So if you have inflammion that involves an area with nerves you will most likely have pain and/or spasms.

    Greg Thompson
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,839
    But it seems that with most patients suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis, surgery is not in the future. Since it is an auto-immune problem, there are a number of medications on the market that can help someone suffering from RA.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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