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  • Help I'm in tears~ Cervical Stenosis/Herniation/Cord Compression

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    Old 04-26-2015, 11:37 AM   #1
    Cervicalgirl
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    Post Help I'm in tears~ Cervical Stenosis/Herniation/Cord Compression

    I am a 46 year old healthy female (aside from my neck).

    In 2011, I underwent an MRI, proceded with an ACFD at C5-6 and 6-7.

    In 2015, I underwent another MRI.

    I presently have left arm pain, mild in the bicep, pretty severe in the ulnar, esp when I bend my elbow or carry my dog, or handbag or type for long periods of time. This seems to be worsening slowly. My left hand shakes too.

    My neck has hurt since 2011. It feels as though someone beat me with a mallet. NONSTOP hurting. I would give it a level 7-9 depending on the day. As the day progresses, I get terrible burning across my shoulders.

    I have SEVERELY TIGHT TRAPS. Massage therapist says the tightest that she has ever seen. They wont let go and if feels like my neck is choking me.

    I am finding the pain hard to manage with tylenol and ibuprofen. I am at so discouraged. Any advice would be greatly greatly appreciated. I just went to a neurosurgeon that told me to try accupuncture which I thought was ridiculous given the fact that there is cord compression. Thoughts, advice, experiences, please share!!! Any suggested medications would be great too... just don't want to become dependent :-(

    I will list my mri by levels and date...
    ___________________________________
    C2-3
    2011 There is no evidence of disc herniation, significant spinal canal stenosis or neural foraminal narrowing.

    2015 Disc space shows mild diffuse disc bulge with no significant canal or foraminal stenosis.
    __________________________________
    C3-4
    2011 There is no evidence of disc herniation, significant spinal canal stenosis, there is minimal narrowing of the left C3-C4 neural foramen, best appreciated on image 6-6, secondary to hypertrophic change in the uncovertebral joint.

    2015 Disc space shows moderate diffuse disc bulge with contact of the midline cervical cord. Uncovertebral Osteophyte causes moderate right and severe left oraminal stenosis at C3-C4

    ________________________________________ ______________
    C4-5
    2011 There is no evidence of disc herniation, significant spinal canal stenosis or neural foraminal narrowing.

    2015 Disc space shows disc space narrowing and disc bulge with contact of the midline cervical cord. Uncovertebral osteophyte causes moderate right and severe left foraminal stenosis at C3-4

    ________________________________________ _________________
    C5-6
    2011 There is a broad-based left paracentral degenerative disc osteophyte complex resulting in central canal stenosis with mild deformity of the cervical spinal cord and narrowing of the left C5-C6 neural foramen, best appreciated on image 4-13 and 5-13.

    2015 Disc space shows prior anerior spinal fusion surgery without canal stenosis

    ________________________________________ ________
    C6-7
    2011 There is a cenral degenerative disc osteophyte complex resulting in central spinal canal stenosis and deformity of the cervical spinal cord, best appreciated on image 6-16. There is no neural foramen stenosis at this level.

    2015 Disc space shows prior anterior spinal fusion surgery with prominent central osteophyte encroaching into the canal and indenting the ventral cervical cord

    ________________________________________ ________________
    C7-T1
    2011 There is no evidence of disc herniation, significant spinal canal stenosis or neural foraminal narrowing.

    2015 Disc space shows diffuse disc bulge and small central herniation slightly contacting the ventral cervical cord. There is mild bilateral foraminal stenosis.

    ________________________________________ _______________
    IMPRESSION:
    2011 - 1. Degenerative disc osteophyte complexes at the C5-C6 and C6-C7 levels resulting in mild deformity of the cervical spinal cord.
    2. Mild left C3-C4 neural foramen stenosis due to unconvertebral joint hypertrophic change.

    2015 Status post fusion surgery with central osteophyte encroachment into the canal at C6-7.
    Degenerative disc disease at several levels as detailed above with foraminal stenosis probably greatest at C3-4.
    Disc herniation centrally C7-T1.

     
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    Old 05-14-2015, 09:02 AM   #2
    2nosy
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    Re: Help I'm in tears~ Cervical Stenosis/Herniation/Cord Compression

    This is hitting home with me. I can empathize with you because you sound like me, except your pain is worse than mine. Your MRI report sounds a lot like mine; although I didn't compare disc bulge by disc bulge. I had my MRI 15 years ago and recently returned to a neurologist because I still had the numbness and tingling in my hands but now my left arm started to ache. My right arm was aching first, but now it seems to be concentrated on the left side. Of course, they gave me an EKG when I mentioned left arm pain, but the heart was normal. I had so-called carpal tunnel release surgery about 15 years ago due to the problem with my hands. The pain got a whole lot worse before it finally got better, but eventually I could type with breaks in between. I'm not recommending anything to you because it seems our situations are very different. I would not recommend anything anyway for obvious reasons, but I wanted to share my story with you because we seem to have a very similar problem. I was reading about the therapies too. I would not allow anyone to poke acupuncture needles in my neck, back, or spinal cord area like you because it sounds too risky and painful. They can be insistent sometimes too, but I tell them no when they try things like that. I read that surgery is a last resort but not recommended because the risks are high. My neighbor had a bad back, problems with his spinal cord, much worse than mine. He had back surgeries, and is now on his back because he is paralyzed from the waist down. He wasn't before the surgeries. I don't know if it would have made a difference, meaning whether or not he might have become paralyzed regardless, but for me, I won't have any surgeries of the sort. I'm going back to see my neurologist and hope he has a plan for me. I hope you feel better.

    Last edited by 2nosy; 05-14-2015 at 04:22 PM.

     
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    Old 05-30-2015, 04:23 PM   #3
    ANGELINMICHIGAN
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    Re: Help I'm in tears~ Cervical Stenosis/Herniation/Cord Compression

    Cervicalgirl...Hi sorry to hear what you are going through, I have a nightmare of my own but will not tell you about it right now, you can read old notes if you go into my name. One probably really dumb questions I have for you and sorry if it sounds stupid. Do you know for sure that on your surgery of 2011, did you fuse? I don't see anywhere on your message that you say you fused!! I am sure you did but just want to make sure.
    I had fusion surgery in 2003 on the exact same vertabraes as you C5/6 and C6/7 and they knew 5/6 had fused during the first year but it took until I went back to my Neurosurgeon many many times with pain afterwards until 2005 and he finally sent me for a myelogram that it was questionable but he said not even the report showed it but in looking himself (neurosurgeon) it was questionable whether I fused or not. It is sometimes very difficult to see it. They say the best is a Cat Scan and it is 2015 and I am still in the same pain and 3 doctors are still questioning whether it is fused or not (That is 2 Neurosurgeons and an Orthopedic spine surgeon)!!! They are 99% I have never fused but in the meantime I am still in a lot of pain and now they are saying revision surgery going through the back and I am also showingthe bone spurs, degeneration and some bulging discs. I am not trying to compare stories but want to make sure that you fused. My neck aches badly, into my shoulder blades and into my right arm down not quite to my elbow. My fingers go numb depending on the way I am sleeping but in my ring finger and pinky finger. I have arthritis in C1 and C2 also. So many different things going on.
    It is so awful when nobody knows what is going on and the pain "certainly is REAL"!!! I am 63 and I know what you are going through.
    I am sending you hugs!!! Keep me posted, hope you get some relief soon, and please watch what you are taking for pain please, once you start it is soooo difficult to go off of these pills. I take Motrin 800mg, Gabapentin 3 or 4 per day, Cymbalta, Zolpidem for sleep, temazepam for headaches. (I live in constant chronic pain and have another appt. with another Neurosurgeon but have to wait until the end of July to see if he thinks I am fused or not)
    Take care....Lyn AngelinMichigan

     
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