Can't extensive my neck back

Posted , 6 users are following.

Hi,

I am 32 years old and have been unable to extend my head backwards fully without pain and also hurts to turn my head right fully and forwards as well. The paib prinarily is at the base of my neck where the shoulders start on the left hand side. I have had this pain for a few months and prior to that had thoracic pain, which I think was down to bad posture and carrying my toddler as it has gotten better slightly with excercises and posture trianing. GP refused to send me for MRI of neck but finally gave one for thoracic back.

The thoracic back came back as normal, however they noted that the cervical spine at c4/c5 has minor degeneration and that there are bone spurs and there is minor bilateral foraminal narrowing.

I am in pain when I move my head back or to the right side, and it is causing me headaches, which I know is exasperated by me worrying too. I just want a diagnosis, at the moment things like sarcoma, etc., are going around in my head.

My questions I guess are (a) would minor degenration and foraminal narrowing cause pain that radiates to left shoulder area? (b) do I need a dedicated image of cervical spine? (c) would things like a tumor show up?

Please respond with any advice. Do I see rheumetologist or a neurologist for this pain? I am thinking of going private just to get a scan and a diagnosis. My GP is really awful and dismissive.

Thank you.

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7 Replies

  • Posted

    Sorry the title is supposed to say can't extend my neck back. I can't seem to correct it.
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  • Posted

    Sorry to hear you are in so much pain, I know exactly how that feels!  The pain in the neck and shoulder are almost certainly to do with the minor degeneration that you have in your cervical spine.  I have had the same thing since I was 30 (am now 37) and I still havn't managed to get referred for an MRI (I was diagnosed by Xray).  Doctors in general don't seem to be very understanding about this condition and I have been told that rheumetologists and Neurologists can't do much to help this condition.  You could try Physio and Accupuncture (usually free on the NHS depending on where you live).  The thing with this condition is that everyone is different and what helps some people doesn't always help others so its best to try and find what is best for you.  I personally work full time and have a young son so taking a lot of prescription pain killers that leave me zonked out is not an option.  I find that massage, deep relief gel and occasional pain killing injections at the pain clinic get me by most of the time.  Good luck x 
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  • Posted

    Hi Zee-Zee,

    I agree that what you describe does sound like cervical problems. I also think that if you can afford it then going private to try to get a diagnosis is also the best solution. I do not think at this stage you should have any manipulation of any kind on your upper body. If the nervous system is compromised then manipulation"might" make things worse. Best of luck for what may be a long journey.

    Mike.

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  • Posted

    Hi Zee-Zee,

    I enourage to join the facebook group called Cervical Myelopathy Supprt Group All spine, Joint and Muscle Conditions as there are many people and professionals you can confer with. As well, their other site is called Radiology Support Group MRI Scans,Xrays and CT scans where you can post your MRI's etc and get feedback.  It has been very helpful to me and I don't feel alone with al these terrible symptoms anymore... Wish you well!

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Lynn!  Thank you for info on the Facebook groups.  I requested to join the first one you mentioned, but can't seem to find one called Radiological Group.  Is that the correct FB name for this group?
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  • Posted

    Thank you everyone for your responses.

    My GP emphasised over the phone that the results are saying it is MINOR foraminal narrowing and minor degeneration, etc. So, it made me think that it shouldn't be this painful for me, and perhaps something else is causing the pain.

    The MRI report stated I had minor bilateral foraminal narrowing, so why am I getting the pain predominantly in my left side and when I try to move my head back it hurts on the left side not right.

    I will try to the join the Facebook groups, thank you.

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    • Posted

      Hello Zee-Zee. The neurologists are better than rheumatologists for this sort of thing.  You could start with facet joint injections to see if that helps.  I tried every single therapy under the sun. Acupuncture worked for me intially.  I use a wheat pack which I put in the microwave as I find heat soothing. Freeze gels are also good.  Try magnesium spray - it's good for tense muscles. I also lie on a hot pad when I'm in a lot of pain.   I'm there with you!!!

       

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