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Trapezius Muscle Spasm or Tightness after Surgery

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2

Comments

  • Bruce EitmanBruce Eitman Akron, OH, USAPosts: 1,510
    Yes most muscle relaxers will do that, so when possible I only took it on weekends.  You might want to ask for a different muscle relaxer to see if another is more effective for you.  Flexner, works for me, but maybe not for you.

    Bruce

    Read my story at Bruce - My Story
    ACDF C4-C5-C6-C7, and getting better every day
    It has been a process of healing, learning, exercising, and resting - and figuring out when to do which.

  • mikebf53mmikebf53 FloridaPosts: 19
    edited 07/27/2016 - 2:08 PM
    Bruce,

    I got the link to "your story" and read it. Sorry you had to go thru so much. It made me feel a lot better knowing the shoulder blade pain was muscle spams. That is what my NS Nurse said also. Like your NS, mine was total talk time of maybe 5 minutes with all my visits. His NP gave me the details. so you gave me some motivation as to take time off. I have been basically swimming 1/2 a mile 4 days a week and doing weights of a lot of reps to get strength back. I sometimes still get tingling and other strange [Edit - stuff or sensations] going on, but very rarely pain. I took your story and made an appt at 6 months for a follow up with NS just to make sure nothing else is wrong. Even though they told me it can take up to a year and symptoms may still occur, I'd like to make sure. 

    So thanks for your story as it did help me.


    **********************************************
    Mike

    I have edited your comment to remove inappropriate language which violated the forum rules.

    Spine-health rules state....
    11.01 You agree not to submit or post material that is vulgar, obscene or otherwise objectionable in any manner or nature to forums on Spine-health.com. This includes the use of #$%@ or XXXXX as a means to hide foul language.
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  • Bruce EitmanBruce Eitman Akron, OH, USAPosts: 1,510
    Mike

    I am glad that the story helped.  Thanks for the feedback.

    Bruce

    Read my story at Bruce - My Story
    ACDF C4-C5-C6-C7, and getting better every day
    It has been a process of healing, learning, exercising, and resting - and figuring out when to do which.

  • From the start of my journey with cervical herniated discs and a right shoulder injury, trapezius muscle spasms have been a major problem. Sometimes I feel like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders (I don't think my head is that heavy, but the spasms force me back to bed - adjustable bed with the head at about a 45 degree angle). If my doctors touch my right trapezius, they can feel the spasms and knots (I have been told I need to learn to relax - hard to do when having constant pain). I had a very successful 4 level ACDF with excellent fusion, but still have chronic pain, fibromyalgia and migraines. Sometimes lidoderm patches help the spasms, and sometimes soaking in the bathtub help. I have tried specific neck PT to strengthen muscles around the injured area, but I have had to stop PT because it was too painful. I do take skelaxen - usually at night so that I can try to get some sleep. I have also tried massage therapy, even though just touching the trapezius is so painful. The massage therapist has tried to "break up" some of the knots, but they return as soon as I have to turn my neck too much. I have given up driving - turning my head quickly causes severe spasms, and a terrible migraine. Even with a successful fusion, knowing that my neck is very secure, I still have to deal with the spasms. Exercise is impossible. At this point I wonder if my thoracic vertebra are herniated, but have not had thoracic MRI. I am now considered to be totally and permanently disabled. Must still live my life - and I have realized that for me, there is no answer to chronic pain - can't work through it, can't learn to live with it. The trapezius muscle spasms are a part of my life. I don't want them to define my life, but I also cringe if anyone puts a hand on my right shoulder/ right side of the top of my back. I suffered my injury in 1994, but it took 2 years to get a correct diagnosis, and had a 2 level ACDF in 1996. Did get some relief, but discs above herniated, and finally had the 4 level ACDF in 2010. Been going through this for a long time.
    BBergstein
  • Bruce EitmanBruce Eitman Akron, OH, USAPosts: 1,510
    BBergstein

    I am sorry that you have this pain.  I have been there.  One of the things that I have learned - the hard way - is that if one muscle relaxer isn't working, try another one.  So, I recommend that you talk to your doctor about trying something different from skelaxin.

    Also, you may want to get try a home TENS unit, the relief is temporary - but sometimes temporary is better than nothing.

    Bruce

    Read my story at Bruce - My Story
    ACDF C4-C5-C6-C7, and getting better every day
    It has been a process of healing, learning, exercising, and resting - and figuring out when to do which.

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  • Have tried a TENS unit, but I do not like the pins and needles feeling (probably because I deal with that type of neuropathy all the time). Have switched my muscle relaxant several times. Flexeril, Soma, Robaxin - and a few others. My pain management dr thinks I do best on the Skelaxen. When I was in the hospital (before the 2nd surgery) - I thought I was having a stroke due to a severe migraine, I was pumped full of Flexeril - made me very woozy, at risk for falling.
    Since there are new meds being developed everyday, I haven't given up hope.
    BBergstein
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