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Neck Pain, dizziness, headaches, vertebral artery

I just had an MRI of my cervical, as I've had a lack of range of motion and frequent pain. It revealed slight herniation at c-5,c-6 1-2mm.

• Is that a lot?

I had an MRA of my circle of Willis to look for issues with my vertebral artery- I've been having vertigo and loss of balance, pain in back of head and headache, cranial pain Tingling of hands and feet, itchy feelings. The exam was done without comparison.

Findings were:

No stenosis, occlusion, or aneurysmal involvement of the distal vertebral arteries, the basilar artery, P1,P2, and P3 segment of the posterior cerebral arteries, the A1 and A2 segments of the anterior cerebral arteries, and M1,M2, and proximal M3 segments of the middle cerebral arteries.
IMPRESSION: Normal MRI of the circle of Willis.

• Is this the right area to be focusing on for my symptoms? why didn't they capture lower portion of vertebral artery such as V4 (intradural), V3 (c-2 to dura), V2 (foraminal) and V1(pre-foraminal)?
It would seem appropriate to have an MRA of the lower segments since I get shooting pain up neck and get sensations of unsteadiness if I turn my neck, or close my eyes in the shower. If I walk into a darkened space, I start to feel unsteady...this never happened before 6 months ago.

• What exam do I need to request to make sure I'm getting correct amount of CFS flow?
• What do my symptoms sound like?

I still have noise in my left ear and decreased hearing, I've read where cervicogenic issues can affect vestibular communication.

• What can I do for cervicogenic dizziness?
• I also showed a slight 5mm cerebellar tonsillar ectopia (horizontal) could this be what’s causing these TRANSIENT symptoms with Cranial pain, cranial pressure?

I've gone down the road of Meniere's disease. The symptoms are different. I have the hearing loss and transient vertigo but much more that Meniere's doesn't. I have severe neck pain, I have a shooting liquid feeling that goes up my neck to my head after sitting and driving for 30-45 min. when I stand up and get out of the car. Is is blood? or is it CSF? I also have unsteadiness (6 months) esp when in the shower with closed eyes. or walking into a darkened room.
I will ask again. Do I need to get a better MRA of my Vertebral Artery? segments v1- v4

I have pain in the back of skull often. I have a cerebellar tonsillar ectopia, or chiari, but they say it's minimal. 5mm.. my MRI was horizontal and I've been told you get a better MRI with vertical.

Can neck problems like herniated disc can lead to malfunction of the vestibular nerves? and cause cervicogenic dizziness?

Can anyone help?


  • Many of your questions can not be answered by imaging studies or any other testing. I've been dealing with the same symptoms starting around 2 years ago. After surgery, things got better, but not completely gone. Any tightness in the neck muscles can cause dizziness. I had bone spurs crowding the nerve roots and the spinal cord at C5/6. Pre-surgery symptoms included: dizziness, vertigo, severe headaches, neck pain and burning in the muscles on the left side of my neck, shoulders and upper back. Things are better now that I am over a year post-op. Taking it easy has helped, although I am left with left side spine pain that can still give me severe headaches and dizziness. Only now I don't get it all the time like I used to.

    Have you had an MRI of your brain? That was the first MRI ordered because I was complaining about the headaches. Sorry I can't give you an answer to your questions, but having spine issues can cause the symptoms you are referring to. Good luck with your continued search for answers.
    2011 ACDF C5-6 for Spondylosis with Myleopathy
    2012 L4-5 herniated disc and hernated disc at C4/5 2013 Taking Amitriptyline for headaches
  • I suffered from hearing loss, tinnitus and vertigo after damage to the vestibulocochlear nerve. It was a neurologist that through examinations was able to determine the cause. I also have nystagmus that many surgeons and GP's will not normally look for, which is also a sign of some sort of nerve involvement. My body has since compensated for the nerve damage and I can walk unaided without being a fall risk. I still have to be careful in the shower and in the dark, but have learned to compensate.

    Have you been examined by a neurologist yet?

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  • dan-1ddan-1 Posts: 2
    edited 03/07/2014 - 4:18 PM

    Have you made any progress with your issue? My situation is identical and for years I've been unable to resolve it.

    Neurologists are telling me to go away and my head feels like I am going through a stroke.
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