To make a long story short, I'm age 54 and I am almost 3 years out from the first fusion, C2 through T3, and almost 2 years out from the revision for hardware failure (the angle/curvature of my neck was never correct and was getting worse.) I've had continuous, and probably permanent, issues with muscle tightness and irritated nerves. Trigger-point injections slightly help. I have tried to continue working, even though working is just barely about all I can do. When I get home, I am so tight and in so much pain that I can't do regular life "stuff". I've also had occasional issues at the bottom of the hardware, with pain there. My neurosurgeon said not to worry so much about that, that he would be more concerned with issues at the top level near the base of the skull/C1 area. Well, I hope I'm not having trouble there now, but suspect I am.
For the last couple of weeks, I've had pain at the top of my neck and up into the back of my head, on the left side. I tried to shrug it off as just the occasional aches and pains I have, but it has gotten worse. Woke up night before last with terrible, stabbing pain in the back of my neck up into my head and decided it was time to call the doctor. None of my medications touch the pain. Well, my neurosurgeon wasn't in, so his "nurse" called me back. I use the term loosely, as she had the nerve (no pun intended) to tell me to call my primary care provider, as a lot of people are suffering from allergies this time of year and that was more than likely what is causing my issues. As nicely as I could, I asked her if she would talk to the doctor about it. Seriously, besides having gone through what I have with my neck, I've been in the medical field for over 35 years and am a CT scan technologist who just happens to know a lot about anatomy and physiology.
Anyway, my pain got worse last night and is now also radiating to my shoulder blade and down the back of my left arm. I suspect my occipital nerve is either inflamed or being impinged upon by my tight muscles, arthritis or scar tissue. So I called again this morning and am waiting to hear if I can be seen today.
Has anyone had a similar problem?