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  • I need some answers

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    Old 03-27-2017, 10:56 AM   #1
    Dawndi
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    I need some answers

    Perhaps someone can answer some questions I may have.

    In June of 2016 I was rear ended by a woman driving 60 Km. who did not apply brakes as she was preoccupied with her cell phone...
    Since then I have had severe neck and upper back pain worsening as time goes on. I had an MRI which showed that I now have spinal stenosis..
    C2-3 mild disk space narrowing. mild to moderate right neural foraminal stenosis
    C3-4 moderate disk space narrowing. broad based osteocartilaginous bar. mild central spinal stenosis. severe right and moderate to severe left neural foraminal stenoses
    C4-5 mild disk space marrowing. asymmetric osteocartilaginous bar contributing to mild right lateral recess and mild to moderate right neural foraminal stenosis
    this continues through to C7-T1
    I have had physiotherapy, aquatics, massage therapy, nerve stimulation, and now another specialist wants me to take another "pain" medication hoping to relax the nerves.
    My question is....since I never had any of these issues before are these a result of the car accident and will it ever heal.
    Are there any steps that I can take to help with the pain...there are days where I find it difficult to function due to the pain in my neck and back and upper arms...
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated !!

     
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    Old 03-28-2017, 11:30 AM   #2
    teteri66
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    Re: I need some answers

    Welcome to the board. I wonder if you have consulted with either an orthopedic spine or neuro surgeon? If not, I would suggest you make an appointment for an evaluation.

    As you read, please keep in mind that members on Healthboards are not medical professionals, but, rather, fellow sufferers of back and neck issues that share experiences and information.

    Being rear-ended as you were, I would guess that you suffered a whip-lash type injury. Would that be correct? While stenosis can be made worse by an impact accident, it is not the cause of it.

    If you had not mentioned the accident, I would never have assumed your issues were the result of anything other than living...i.e., "wear and tear." The findings indicate some degenerative disc disease, which is resulting in some "disc space narrowing. ". Usually this is a sign that the discs are beginning to dry out, which causes them to flatten, which brings the bones of the neck closer together.

    This tends to set off a cascade of effects in the surrounding tissue, facet joints, etc. that often leads to stenosis. Stenosis is a term that means narrowing. In the spine, stenosis primarily occurs in two areas: one is in the central canal and the other is in the foramen, which is an opening located at each vertebral segment where a spinal nerve exits the spine to go out to the area of the body that is innervates by the nerve.

    Stenosis is when one of these openings becomes blocked ...by things like disc material from a herniated or bulging disc, bone spurs, facet joint enlargement, etc. The neck is a very small space and the body parts all fit in with little room to spare. When "something"occurs that makes a part larger, it can put pressure on a spinal nerve...which can cause the nerve to be irritated or compressed (pinched), resulting in symptoms like pain, tingling or numbness.

    People often have some spinal stenosis but are not aware of it due to the lack of symptoms it causes. I suspect this is the case with you. My guess is that you had some of this going on before the accident. The impact of the accident resulted in damage to the soft tissue, ligaments, etc. of the neck...which caused swelling and put pressure on some nerves.

    I have no idea whether things will go back to the pre-symptomatic phase...but I think it is unlikely that the foramina stenosis will go away on its own. The MRI doesn't indicate what is causing the stenosis in the foramina. Often the only way to resolve this problem is through a decompression surgery. Where they go in and scrape out all the gunk to open up the foramina openings to create more space for the nerves.

    It is the worst at C3-4 where the foraminal stenosis is severe. That means there is very little room for the nerves at this level to function normally.

     
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