I have moderate foraminal stenosis in my C 6 and 7 on the right side. There's no disc involvement. I'll be fine and then I'll turn a certain way lately and I get like a spasm like pain in my neck which moves down to my shoulder collarbone area. I have been told to go to a chiropracter by my physical therapist, which has reached a dead end. I CAN NOT do the nautilus type machines. Since I've tried, I'm getting these spasm type things that seem to start pretty easy. Do muscle relaxers help at all? I'm only on Mobic now, an anti-imflammatory.
I find that muscle relaxants do help a little. When I get the kind of pain you describe I tend to 'tense up' and it gets worse. So from my perspective the muscle relaxants help to calm me and the muscles down - which in turn may take some pressure off the nerve(s)
YES!!! exactly Kross! I was walking around the store yesterday, like I was walking on a tightrope...don't turn, don't look up, don't look down...and in the car FORGET IT!!! I keep thinking someone will hit us or vice versa, and my shoulders are up round my ears!!! I go Thursday to the chiropracter who does the activator thing, but was told the FIRST appointment is a consultation....I am so sick of waiting for someone to HELP me! I had to ask for the Mobic from my primary, you have to ask him for anything...the first ortho I went to said it was muscular, the second looked at my xrays and said..oh it's typical of your AGE,at least the MRI showed the nerve stuff, so I have a diagnosis, this has been going on since January Can I ask what muscle relaxer you're on? I was on Robaxin at the start, but it wasn't spasming then. Thanks for all your responses, really appreciate it!
I can SO relate to how you feel. I had pinched nerves (among other things) and had an ACDF in Jan at C5-C7. I still have a pinched nerve (I think) at C4-C5. It never ends. Muscle relaxers never have worked for me and they totally space me out. The only thing that has made a dent in my spasm pain, for me, is Valium. Not enough to get hooked, but enough to take the edge off. After my ACDF, they gave me Valium 2mg, which is a small dose. I have had 5mg, which worked even better, naturally, but I am afraid of getting hooked on it at that dose. YOu can use it short term, though. A low dose may be worth trying too. Also, I was doing great after my surgery, but then went on a trip and pulled too much luggage and torqued out my shoulder blade area from the C4-C5 problem. I took a steroid for 6 days called MEDROL DOSEPAK. (Methylprednisolone) Some of the pain could be inflammation. Its not a thing you would take for a long time or alot of times, but I do have to say it has helped the flare up ALOT!
Last edited by SKZ; 07-23-2007 at 03:23 PM.
Thanks SKZ, but like i said, I seem to have a problem getting ANYTHING or ANYWHERE with this thing..it's like HELLO!!! I'm in pain here,I guess I don't complain enough?? I mean my doctor is like"oh just keep going to p.t. then maybe if you're not getting anywhere I'll send you some place for a shot" I've been going 6 months! He didn't originally send me though, an orthopedic guy who told me he ONLY did hands..did... it's been like one dead end after another.What's an acdf or whatever you said, some kind of operation? What kind of doctor were you sent to for this, who gave you this dosepak thing? The Mobic I'm on is supposed to be for inflammation,not strong enough I guess. I used to be on Xanax a few years back for sleep issues and anxiety, found out last year it was my THYROID... it's very addictive they say, don't know about the Valium..2mgs of that isn't a lot though. I took the xanax for the MRI...it's funny it DID help, but don't want to get hooked and NEED it all the time, that freaks me out, I'm like help me, but yet I'm afraid of certain meds if I read the side effects!
I went thru 5 years of what you are now going thru. A good Dr. to see is a PHYSIATRIST (aka rehab Dr.). Those help you alot with medications. Also a PAIN specialist is good. They are alot of times anesthesiologists and do the specialized pain injections. I have seen them all, lemme tell ya. The ACDF is what alot of us on this board have had. Its a kind of neck fusion surgery standing for Anterior Cervical Disketomy and Fusion. I wish I had mine a long time ago because I suffered alot needlessly. But its not something you go into lightly, of course. I researched the heck out of it before I had it. This board is a wealth of info. My Physiatrist tried alot of things to help me, as well as my Pain specialist. I had degenerative disks and nothing can really fix that. I also had bone spurs( arthritis), and facet joint problems ( more arthritis). The Physiatrist sent me to the Orthopedic Spinal Surgeon and I am really pleased with the job he did. Many other people go to Neurosurgeons. Its a big question on this board. Ask away, whatever you need, ok?
Thanks for the info SKZ! Yeah this is all new to me, I guess my doc doesn't think the MRI was too bad seeing there's no disc involvement or nothing pressing on my spine. It's weird I seem to keep coming to the same conclusion that it might have something to do with my Graves disease, or the meds I take for them, it started about 3 months after I started treatment. The most common side effect is muscle and joint pain, and NERVE IRRITATION, since I was diagnosed with this nerve thing, I went back and looked at side effects and THAT was there! I have to be on this.. there really is no other drug for hyper thyroid, I don't want radioactive iodine, that's a whole other realm of side effects after so... I'll try this chiropracter for a little while, then I'll have to demand something else of my primary I guess. I have a very physical job so there's no getting away from it, altho it doesn't really hurt anymore with work?? Once it flares up, it stays for a week or so, this time, I just turned my neck to one side...UGH! Another time the physical therapist did it.. I had been fine for a month! Then it was the exercise machines....Thanks again! Brans
Last edited by Bran'sNana; 07-24-2007 at 01:13 PM.
Well keep us posted. Maybe the chiropractor will help. One time in the very very beginning of my neck saga...my hands were getting numb when I sleep. So I let this go for months. And like an idiot, I still had it when I was scheduled to have a hysterectomy. Literally the day before the surgery, I got desperate and went to a chiropractor. He adjusted me and the numbness went away for a full year. (and the pain). Now I could never ever see one again with all this neck stuff and the surgery. But he did help me then.
oh...here's a question..did you have an injury that precipitated this? I had strained my neck in late 02 from flipping a mattress and moving a table in the same week. Was in agony and went to a chiropracter then, it did help and after about 4 months I quit and was pretty good till I came down with this other illness.(the thyroid thing) I also had carpal tunnel for some years prior to this, the "hand' surgeon said it wasn't bad enough for surgery,most of the girls I work with have it to some degree because of the repetitive nature of our job. I realize that this nerve thing can run down your arm too,did you have numbness and pain at all in your arm too? My arm seems to be alright at the moment, anyway. I even had tennis elbow about 10 years ago! I should switch arms and hands huh? The computer doesn't help it at all either does it?LOL! I never thought I'd still be cleaning houses for 18 years either...the chiropracter did say athritis would set into it probably especially since I was in my forties when it happened.What kind of scar do you have from the operation, and how long did it take?How about recovery time? How old are you...if you don't mind me asking?
I am 51, but dont look a day over 50 . hah.
My scar is exactly 2 inches to the center right of the front of my neck and it is so faint, you can hardly even see it anymore. It is amazing. I used those silicone scar strips, which now I swear by. People are amazed. Oh yea, the scar is horizontal.
My arm never got numb or hurt..just the hands with the numbness. Its a little better since the surgery, but I let it go on too long, so I am sure I got nerve damage...plus I have some carpal tunnel, also. Oh, isnt aging fun??
The surgery was much better than I expected. I think the thing that was the biggest help afterwards was that I started walking on the treadmill the 2nd after the surgery, which gave me stamina. The pain wasnt really very bad. I have had surgeries galore and this wasnt one of the really bad ones. But it is a long recuperation, and it does take time to get your neck to move halfway normally again. I didnt have to wear a collar, which I am VERY glad. I drove at about 6 weeks, when I started P.T. I think the main thing is to NOT over do and to use the ole noggin. I dont always go that, though. heh.
Interesting reading your posts. I had an MRI yesterday and have learned today that I have a pinched nerve at C4. I had ACDF in 2004 at C5-C7. In January of this year I started experiencing hand numbness (no other symptons). I was tested for carpal, had a nerve conduction study which all showed no problems. The MRI show the bulge at C4. Reently I have experienced shoulder pain. I see you comments about muscle relaxers and injections. Will those make numbness go away? I know they help with pain. I had two injections before my surgery in 2004. Thanks for your help
Wow this is quite an old thread you found on here!
As far as I know, nothing helps numbness, except surgery. I still have my hand numbness, only when I sleep. I waited too long to have surgery, so it because permanent. I sleep with wrist braces and the hell with it.
hi...I noticed you had similar neck and shoulder problems as I do...have you had any relief? I have a bulging disc between the 5th and 6th cervical vertibraes but I have pain in the shoulders which causes my scapula to move out of place, sort of under the arm pit, very sore subscapularis and then tingling down both arms to the fingertips...doctors think I am crazy...all muslces related to the trapezius hurt and no one has answers....I go to chiropractor 2x a week, can't go longer than 5 days without seeing him or I will continue to hurt!! any help from your previous experience??? thanks!!!