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Temporal and occipital pain caused by neck?

MaggiePMMaggieP Posts: 337
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:19 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
I have a lot of degeneration, osteophytes, bulging disc at CC3-4 impinging on nerve root, several foraminal stenosis, central canal stenosis, and facet degeneration. My question is can this obviously bad neck cause pain in the occipital and temporal areas of face and head? I was involved in a stressful driving situation today, and by the time I made it home my pain level was an 11. I took a dose of pain meds, and more again two hrs later. It has eased off some, but if I push at the base of the skull, or to the side of my eyes at the temples, it is a sharp, ice-pick pain. The explainations for occipatal and temporal neuralgia didn't quite cover my symptoms.

I also have another problem........please bear with me, and keep reading! When I'm at my computer, I have to tilt my head back a little bit to see the monitor. I also do this while driving, as I am a fairly short person. After a time of this, when I go to straighten out my head, my neck feels like it is locked into position. I have to force my head down, and then hear a loud popping sound. It is quite audible. Is this bone spurs or discs impinging on one another? It scares me, as I worry about it getting stuck looking up, or breaking something when I force it down.

Any ideas or experiences you have to share would be most welcome. Thanks.



  • Hi Maggie,
    I am having surgery on Thursday for herniations at c4-5, 5-6 and 6-7. I have had the usual numbness, tingling and killer pain for about two years. And yes, I have had severe at times headaches in the temporal region, though not occipital. The headache is in fact there this morning. I used to be able to crack my neck as you talk about when my head would "stick" in place but as things have progressed it has just gotten stuck but it isn't terrible. Just wish I could crack it again! My Chiro was great and was able to keep me loose that way too but things have gotten too far down the track and even he wants the surgery I am having.

    So, after all that I would say get over to a doc asap. Chiro, Ortho, NS you pick the one but it really sounds like you need some answers that they can give. My doc said that it wan't impossible that the headache was nerve pain but more than likely muscles working over time causing stress. The cracking I have yet to ahve completely explained but from what I was told by the Chiro is that it is simply extending the space in the disc. A doc could certainly fill in the gaps

    Good Luck! :)


  • Hello,

    I have had terrible migraines for many years, but for the past couple of years they have gotten worse, my neurologist finally sent me to a pain management doctor then she did a MRI of my neck, found out I have bone spurs in my neck.

    They just say it's possible the neck pain is causing the migraines, I just continue to deal with it because no medication touches these migraines. the only thing I take for neck pain is a muscle relaxer once in a while.

    I've tried a couple of muscle relaxers like Robaxin, zanaflex, can only take at night because they make me tired. Are there others I might want to try?


    Cindy4hope :)
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  • Yes, I have a lot of popping in my upper back and lower neck. I have had undiagnosed back pain for 8 yrs and am forced to pop my back and neck possible a hundred time s aday. I dont kow why it pops but it does give relive as I feel like the joints are getting "unlocked"

    hope that helps..
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