I'm not sure if I should post this here in the neck forum or in the chronic pain area, but here goes:
Hi, my name is Jacky and I’m posting for my boyfriend Scott. About 3 years ago he had C5-6-7 fused. He had an injury at work and the doctors said he also had degenerative disk disease so the fused that part of his neck. All went pretty well. Then last year he had a motorcycle accident and had no choice but to rear end the guy in front of him. He was almost at a complete stop on his bike when he hit the guy because he hit him square on and then the bike tipped over. He probably took most if not all of the impact in his wrists/arms that of course traveled right up to his neck. Up until about 4-5 months ago his neck was manageable – had pain but not anything that stopped him from work etc. Then the pain just started getting worse and worse. He goes to a pain management doctor and they have done the trigger point injections, the part where they inject something to find out if nerve ablation should be done and the nerve ablation. Nothing helps.
Now he is also getting headaches that start in the back of his head and he says he can live with those but they usually travel up the right side of his neck, behind his ear and then he has stabbing pains on the top right of his head and sometimes into his right eye. The migraines when he gets them are unbearable. He uses an icepack to help but it usually doesn’t do a whole lot.
He is on Percocet and can take that with a Tylenol and is on the fentynl patch (50mg I believe).
I don’t think the pain management doctors really have any answers for him – the pain should be getting better not worse. I don't think they know what the cause is either - right now we think it is a pinched or trapped nerve in the C7, T1 area or possible scar tissue from the previous fushion that is pushing on a nerve.
I have had him go to my chiropractor and that has helped but it is a slow process and he just can’t afford to go 3 times a week ($35 a pop) – insurance does not cover it, so it is all out of pocket. She is really really nice and explained a LOT of things to both of us. She thinks that because of all the procedures he had done in that area that it’s over stimulated and because of the nerve ablation the brain keeps sending signals but is not getting an answer back. Sort of made sense to me how she explained it.
She gave us the name of an acupuncturist and I hope that he will try that route also. I don’t know if that will “solve” his problem but I’m hoping it will give him some relief. But then there is the money problem with that also, the medical bills are killing him.
He also gets constipation from the pain pills – one thing just leads right on into the next doesn’t it. He also gets really frustrated and has a “bad attitude” when he has all this pain and his doctors don’t really seem to care too much. (He has had various MRI’s etc.) I do understand about the depression and frustration but I also feel really bad that I can’t seem to help him. He has an appt with a neurologist for the migraines – he called in early Nov when his regular doctor gave him a referral and he can’t get in until Dec 11 ! It’s a 3 hour appt and part of it is with a physicologist so I hope that he will help him in dealing with the pain (he has mentioned that he wishes he were dead rather than have this quality of life).
Anyway – I joined so I could try to get some information for him – I’ll try to get him to post but he is an IT tech and works on computers all day so he doesn’t want to get on one after work.
These are the medications he takes:
Fentanyl 50 mcg/hr Patch changes every 3 days)
Oxycodone /APAP 7.5 mg-500 mg Tab (about 2 per day) was a higher dosage and 3-4 per day before they prescribed the patch)
Ambien CR 12.5 mg Tab to sleep
Lidoderm Lidocaine Patch 5% he only puts that on if his neck really hurts
Cymbalta 60 mg capsules
And then for high blood pressure and cholesterol:
Pravastatin Sodium Tablets 40 mg
Metoprolol 50 mg Tab
Diovan HCT 160 mg/12.5 mg Tab
It’s like a Walgreens pharmacy over here!
I’m just wondering if anyone else has the same/similar problem and some methods that may have worked for them. It seems you have to be your own doctor nowadays and really research because the doctors don’t tell you anything.
Wow – that was really long so if you made it to the end – thank you for taking the time to read it and I thank you in advance for any advice, suggestions, comments, etc.