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  • Severe arm pain - just got MRI results. c5-6 and c6-7 troubles

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    Old 05-31-2014, 10:46 AM   #1
    Join Date: Aug 2012
    Location: California
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    PrincessMa HB User
    Severe arm pain - just got MRI results. c5-6 and c6-7 troubles

    My husband is having severe arm pain. Started after skiing in January this year. No falls or anything, just started hurting on the 10 hour drive home from Tahoe. Prior to him seeing the doctor has tried chiropractic and acupuncture. We have a small tens unit (HiDow) and he has tried that. Has started getting regular massage - twice a week minimum since then.

    Feb and March - He saw our family Dr and they put him on anti inflammatory meds twice daily, muscle relaxers (first skelaxin, then flexeral, now something else), and pain meds (first norco, now oxycontin). He has had 3 injections of cortisone. The first was guided with a sonogram in his right shoulder and relieved pain in his right arm within a few days. The pain then began in left side. Two shots in left neck/shoulder area - not guided with sonogram or anything - has done nothing. Nothing is really helping except the ice - and that isn't helping much now. 56 year old in tears a few times a week.

    May - returned to our GP and referred for MRI. We have been out of town ever since he had the MRI. Now, he describes fingers that feel numb and like they will explode - as if they are so "full". Forearm pain - bicep pain and burning - his pectoral muscles just now started with pain and burning. Neck is even sore to the touch at this point. He has been icing almost constantly. Have lidocaine patches that don't seem to help much.

    MRI report:

    The patient was experiencing severe arm pain during exam and was unable to tolerate remaining motionless during examination. Axial images significantly degraded by motion artifact.

    c5-6 minor posterior annular bulge and uncovertebral spurring with bilateral moderate foraminal stenosis and suspicion of indentation of the exiting c6 nerve root. There is mild spinal stenosis (AP sac diameter 10mm)

    c6-7 left foraminal 3 mm disc protusion (suggested by sagittal images) with the axial images at this level severly degraded. Suspicion of bilateral moderate to severe foraminal stenosis. There is mild spinal stenosis.

    No cord edema or myelomelacia.

    He is seeing the Dr on Tuesday and I am going with him. I guess I am just looking for ideas on what to ask. It is so hard seeing him in SO MUCH pain.

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    Old 05-31-2014, 01:54 PM   #2
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    Re: Severe arm pain - just got MRI results. c5-6 and c6-7 troubles

    He needs to see a neurosurgeon who specializes in necks. With moderate-severe foraminal stenosis, nothing short of surgery is going to help this. His spinal nerves are getting squeezed tightly by bone that has overgrown the holes (foramen) that the spinal nerves pass through from the spinal cord. He has some disc herniation as well, and all of this can be taken care of with one procedure. Not fun, but this will not get better, and he needs relief ASAP before those nerves are permanently damaged. I hope his Dr. will advocate for him and expedite getting him into a good neurosurgeon.

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