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neck issues causing weird headaches?

autumnjoyaautumnjoy Posts: 55
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:43 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
hi everyone. i was hoping to get some feedback about some issues i've been having with headaches.

i've been getting these episodes where i start seeing weird wiggly lines and colors in my peripheal vision, then i get these blind spots in my vision.

this usually goes on anywhere from 15 to 30 mins.

after the weird visual disturbances, i get these splitting headaches where it feels like alot of pressure in my head, and at times feels like someone is sticking an icepick into my brain.

i also get this kniving feeling in my head when i cough.

this is on top of the feeling like i have a knife sticking in my neck.

i still have the numbness in my fingers too (since December).

i know that the worst spot in my neck is at C6-7, and that can contribute to the numbness, but the headaches?

does anyone have any experience or advice to offer?

thanks so much.......... Autumn


  • Good afternoon! The lights, colors...when I get those it is when my blood sugar is too low, and my blood pressure is up because of it - least that is what my GP told me, and since I've kept my sugar up, haven't had that symptom again.

    The headaches.. Yes C6/7 most definitely cause them! Let me ask you this Autumn? Do you have pain in or around your neck before the headache, or after most times? I've found that my C2/3 gives me the ocular (back of the head/base of the skull), and my C5/6 and then later C6/7 the top/front of my head. I hope you are feeling better. *hug*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hi Autumn,

    I get headaches, too. Migraines, and nasty ones. Mine start with neck pain, then pressure at base of my head, then they somehow move to my forehead/eye area. I have some blurry vision issues, and earaches with them as well.

    I have herniated, ruptured/extruded discs and bone spurs from C4-C7, and am waiting to be scheduled for surgery. I'm so done with this pain.

    I've also had lumbar laminectomy to treat stenosis. Not fun.

    Right now I'm trying to balance rest and activity. I need to rest my neck muscles and not move around too much, but that is causing stiffness and spasms in my lumbar spine. The nerve pain in my legs is back. I miss talking my walks. It did so much to keep my lumbar spine problems under control.

    I can't wait for this to all be over :(
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  • I get the same headaches autumn, I have problems with c45 and a pinched c6 nerve, the exiting nerve, I called my paim management guy and he says its not related to my neck, thats a crock of bull. I tried to tell his nurse that I did not have a history of migraines until my neck started to flare up!!!
    I get squiggly lines in my peripheal vision, pain in the c45 area the head hurts all day and cant move, I have tried everything for the episodes and nothing helps. I am hoping the doc will prescribe something like topamax for the headaches, I understand it works well for that type of headache. Big hug to you these are no fun, Lela
  • Hi Autumn,
    Yes indeed cervical disk problems can cause headaches,I have one right now....it's been 5 days.....I know it's my neck from past experience. I too have the vision issues(I think it's called aura) That goes away for me if I lie down....There is nothing that works for my headaches,taking a flexeril and going to bed will help,but I can't always do that.I am waiting for more injections in my neck,(have to finish the lumbar first....insurance won't approve 2 things at one time) I have C5-6 C6-7 fused and bulges at C1-2,C2-3,C3-4,having arm pain and weakness again.....and so it goes huh...I hope you find the relief you need! Sagehen
  • I have had weekly headaches (3-4 days per week)since last fall. The ACDF did not stop them. Migraine medication does not work on them either. When I lift my arms above my shoulders I start to get the flashing lights not to mention intense pain head in my neck (combing my hair and shampooing it is quite a task now).

    My NS said the muscle spasms can cause cervical heaches. I had a brain MRI last Decemeber to rule out other issues. I just started on Topomax to try and lower the frequency. The last headache was Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday and was a killer. Ice packs help tremendously (as does the heat wraps).


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  • When I first started having symptoms I had the worst "Tension" like headaches...Now I sometimes get pressure on the top of the head...But most of the time I get scalp nerve pain/ache on the sides top and where the skull meets the neck.

    For some reason it gets bad from April to Aug and I haven't a clue why.

    I have 2 to 3mm herniations in disc c5/c6-c6/c7 . I also have mild to moderate central stenosis, osteophytes, DDD, and T2 shows DDD. And I am 28 and it has been going on since I was 25.

    :( Oddly enough muscle relaxers help more than pain pills but I need both.
  • We are going thru the same thing, it appears. I started to notice when in total darkness, I saw sparkling half circles in my periperal vision. My neurologist sent me to an opthamologist who gave me a million tests and had me see a retina specialist. The retina doc saw no danger of a detachment and told me these lines I see may be ocular migraines. My opthamologist was incredulous that the neurologist that I saw did not pick up on this and he referred me to a neurologist he recommended and thought I needed a brain MRI.
    I also have severe cervical pain from C2 with 4 bulging discs and more. Now I saw a NS who ordered a brain scan to help diagnose my pain source.
    I hope I can save you some grief with fewer needless dr visits to solve your own special 'puzzle'!
  • Hi Autumn,

    It definitely sounds like a migraine headache to me, as I suffer from them. Those weird visual disturbances you get before the headache is called an "aura". I used to only get the auras, for like 15 years. Then over the past several years, sometimes I also get the headache after the aura is over. I also get nausea, vomiting, I smell weird things, or smell things very strongly, my ears will ring.

    I am not sure, though, if cervical issues can actually cause migraines - however, if you have nerve inflammation, perhaps it can cause the neurological symptoms of migraine from neck pain. I also have cervical spine problems, which cause me headaches, but they are different from migraines. The pain starts in my neck, goes up the back of my head, sometimes spreads to the sides and/or to my eyes. My doctor said this is called cervicogenic headache. I only know the difference in myself because i've had different headaches on & off for so many years, plus I take Imitrex to stop my migraines and it always works. It does not work, though, for headaches I get from my neck. My migraines are caused by light, flickering light, and certain patterns (like houndstooth and thin, dark and white stripes), but there are other causes as well.

    Either way, you might want to have it checked out, especially if you've never had it happen before.
  • Hi!
    Yes,neck problems can definitely cause headaches.I got rid of them with special exercise. Try to strengthen and to lengthen your neck muscels.

    Spam link not allowed. Removed by authority member, Cath111.
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