So a little over two weeks ago, I saw my surgeon, I was doing GREAT, I thought all my problems were figured out and that everything was on track.
Exactly one week later, I woke up with weird nerve pain in my elbow.. now before this I had some shoulder pain which was thought to be a pinched nerve so I never mentioned it to the surgeon. Anyhow, this nerve pain in my elbow was very strange and would be like a shock that went up the underside of my arm. The next day I went to PT and by the time I got home, I was worse with tingling in both hands. Over the next few days or so, it got to where both arms both legs, both hands and both feet and my face and head were all tingling. This was all around super bowl weekend.. My neck started hurting with sharp pain too at times, way above and also below the level where my surgery was done as far as I can tell. Sometimes I would feel clicking or shifting, which could be other things in my neck but am not sure. Over all I was in a lot of pain. I kept waiting to call to see if this was just a freak occurrence, I know we can all have worse days than others, so I waited almost a week before I called. After speaking with the PA, we thought it could be other things causing the problem especially after I was doing so well when I saw them a couple weeks earlier. So he said call back if you are even a little bit like this early next week. Well, I ended up calling again.
I have to point out that I have other neurological issues. But instead of getting into all that I'll just say that I have a low B12, so I get monthly shots, and even though low b12 can cause issues like tingling in hands and feet, I had already started getting shots before this all came on so I don't think its that, I also have been fighting a nasty cold.
I've had swelling issues since surgery and was taking celebrex, but found that its not like other NSAIDS in that it has some different properties and think it was agitating my neuro disorder so I stopped taking it, tried it again, had bad results, stopped it, tried one more time and at that point, enough was enough. So part of me thinks this could be a swelling issue... I've also been very tight with my muscles, PT once said she couldn't get things to let up, so perhaps I need to be on a muscle relaxer. I also sit poorly at the computer, so part of me thinks that perhaps this is some self inflicted neuropathy, - looks like I'll be needing a lap top like some of you all have, lol.
The PA said that he thought he was starting to see fusion happen when they looks at my last films a couple weeks ago or so now, so that is good news, I just hope nothing is going wrong now. I don't know what to think anymore. I'll be going to see my Surgeon again this coming week.
ms pearly.......after seeing several neurosurgeons, researcing disorders as well, i have learned that swelling accompanies fusion almost all of the time. as it is so close to your surgery, time is an important factor. most ns won't commit to such an early diagnosis; they seem to just take an inventory of your symptoms and tell you that is part of your nerves. take some time and look up complex regional pain syndrome...i have , and is seems that i'm a great fit by symptoms standards, but, the ns won't commit as of yet. keep your mind moving forward....god's energy is yours, just decide to focus and use it in a positive manor....prayers for you, bryan
If the symptoms are worrying you, and especially if they're continuing, definitely talk to your NS about it. Better to be safe, right?
I continued to take muscle relaxers - as needed - for months after surgery. Depending on the amount of activity, type of activity, weather, alignment of the planets or whatever, there were just some days where my upper back and shoulders and neck would get so tight I thought they were going to snap. My PT would sometimes comment on it, too.
So talk to the NS about symptoms and concerns, and maybe about some muscle relaxers, and maybe ask your PT about ideas for stretches that might help when you're at home.
Someone here had mentioned pressure point devices like the Theracane, which I have, but I don't know if something like that would be safe for you to use on your own yet. But maybe another thing worth asking your PT about.
I think there are certain exercise that I might need to avoid, but over all I think she does pretty well with me, she mostly does massage anyhow. She has commented on my tightness before. The more I think about things, and as symptoms come and go and lead into other problems, I think it might largely be muscle related.
pardon my lack of following your case PD,but did you have a c spine surgery,a fusion?you stated you are feeling "shifting" in there?just what was the extent of your damage prior to your surgery and how close was this to your actual spinal cord?when i had my fusion surgery,because i had not fused over like 9 months time,that little donor bone fragment was bouncing all over the freakin place inside there and causing me pain and numbness and tingling in places that i never had before my surgey was done.it could be highly possible that the bone is too loose in there still and is actually intermittantly kind of 'bouncing' off of certain nerves and possibly even going back into the spinal canal.just a possibility here thats all.i really do think possibly having another MRI at this point wouldn't hurt,you know?just to see how things are in there.if you are actually feeling shifting(are you hearing any grinding or crunching of bone on bone sounds in there too?)the bone will have a very veryhard time actually attaching itself to the proper endplates or even worse,could end up attaching to the wrong area or in a non aligned way.do you have hardware?i ended up,after finally convincing my NSs freaking nurse,that something wasn't right and then had it confirmed that i had not fused after nine agonizing months,having a plate and screws placed in there which eventually did cause a good solid fusion.this was actually visualized by the NS who did my spinal cord surgery a couple years later,so i do know without a doubt at least that my fusion finally took.
you just need to make sure that little SOB isn;t bouncing(actually just sliding and shifting) around in there.i do wish you luck PD,please keep us all posted here as whats up,K?Marcia
11-20-01,placement of hardware for failed fusion
9-22-03,removal of cavernous hemangioma that was inside spinal cord. Neuro damage to L hand L leg and R leg.
I think a lot of the clicking and movement could be other stuff in my neck. Tendon/Ligament injury was never ruled out after my car accident a few years ago. The fall on the stairs this last june is what did me in though, I had some movement going on, reverse curve of the spine and a bone spur.
I had one level done C5-6, no donor bone, had a cage, bits of my own bone were used from the sugery, used bone growth stuff, and closed off with plate and screws. The PA said that he thought he actaully started to see fusion starting after looking at the films at the last appointment. I don't think anything is wrong with the site of surgery, but its possible something else is happening, but I really dont' know much at this point, its all speculation. I'll see the doc later this week, so perhaps more insight then. The weirdest thing about all this is that pain can come and go at different levels, or just when I think the shoulder pain is gone then it comes back. Its like a revolving door.
Thanks for the support everyone, prayers are welcome and am thankful for them
Last edited by PearlDoves; 02-18-2007 at 10:40 PM.
Well its been a while since I've been on. I just don't know what to think anymore. I feel like I'm chasing my own tail. As I said before I "was" doing fine. Arm Heaviness seemed to become shoulder pain, shoulder pain lead into hand tingling, hand tingling lead pretty much into full body tingling and pain, and other issues which may or may not be related.
So I did see the NS again over a week ago, he had me get MRI's of my L and C spine, and everything looked great from his standpoint. He said he saw no pinched nerves and there was some very mild degeneration in a couple of places but nothing serious or anything needing surgery.
Meanwhile I feel like my left arm is dying, it feels like my arms and legs are falling asleep a lot, I get a LOT of pain in my left shoulder. I've been put on a nerve pain med and a muscle relaxer and I'm sppose to start physical therapy again soon. I try heat sometimes on my shoulders and neck, I've tried myoflex cream. I'm just very weary now. I'm sick of being in pain almost ALL THE TIME! I hate feeling druged up. Any motivation I have is minimal. Some of my family thinks I might have just aggitated something again. But after 2 months of being in pain, I'm about ready to give up on that theory. Sometimes I think maybe I should get my shoulder xrayed but then I think... well its not just my arm, its my leg too. Sometimes I think.. well maybe its some kind of periphrial neuropathy because of whatever inflamation process that might be going along with the healing process or from sitting at the computer too much. But really, I just don't know. I don't know if I should keep waiting, and see if Physical therapy helps this time around, or if I should go back to my Primary doc or my neurologist.
I think its possible, Iím also starting to think that my shoulder may be a separate problem all together, sometimes its sharp pain and it gets incredibly tight, which might in turn be pulling on my neck muscles and causing all the other problems and pain. I should probably go see my primary about it, its been over 2 months now of pain.
I'll be honest- I didn't read EVERY post, but have you tried a good massage??
Even though my surgery went great back in August, I still feel a little tinge in my right arm now and then, I think from overdoing. I find that a good massage on the muscles in my neck and shoulders usually knocks it right out.