Cervical Spondylosis at 20 years old...

Posted , 16 users are following.


After two years of testing and treatments, I've finally been given a diagnosis. Cervical Spondylosis. I have 3 bulging discs, and bone spurs. I have tried almost everything in the book at this point. Medications (anti inflammatory, pain, muscle relaxers), physical therapy, cortisone injections, compressors, home remedies, etc. Nothing has helped me, and I am really wanting to get a surgery, as I think it's my best option at this point. I've been to several different specialists, and all have refused for different reasons. "You're too young", " you haven't tried literally everything yet" "your nerves aren't messed up enough", etc. In summary, I've basically been told my doctors, "you're screwed, sorry, but here are some referrals for possible temporary fixes that'll cost you even more money". I feel so lost. I'm in constant pain. There are times when I drive that I can't even turn my head to check my blind spot. I can't work to the best of my ability anymore, and am having to cut down a lot of my physical responsibilities at work. Because of that, I have to find a job that would still hire me despite these issues. Doctors don't seem to want to truly help me with this. I don't know where to turn. Does anyone have any advice with this? I really don't want to be living with this 40+ years into the future...

0 likes, 24 replies

Report / Delete

24 Replies

  • Posted

    I am also in the same place as you diagnosed 9 years ago , it's awful you need to have it to understand it affects  your whole life I am working in a restaurant and do light duties I am at the end of this job after 9 years even light duties are too much what I can say is I've lasted this long due to swimming that strengthens the neck muscles mit not work for everyone but certainly helps me as I've tried everything apart from surgery , don't want to go down that route sounds dodgy .
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I also have the same, diagnosed at 50, now54, but have had symptoms and pain for 20years previous to this. I have never had a

    scan or an xray, have been refused these

    so many times.

    Massage helps me and I live on strong

    painkillers. As you stated, this condition

    restricts what you can do, stiffness and pain is horrid, so debilitating, has a massive

    impact on our lives. I have little faith in GP's,

    surely its not that hard for consultants, to

    find reasonable ways to reduce symptoms.

    I believe the NHS do not have the money to deal with this condition, its very common.

    I so hope that you can find some relief somewhere.

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I totally sympathise. I tried everything then eventually had surgery. It seemed to have worked, then I went on a plane journey and am back to square one.  I can't drive, have had to give up my job. It's just awful. The worst of it is, that I look fine! Have you tried acupuncture? That did help me at first. I now have a wheat pack in the microwave which I use when it is really bad and strangely enough, reflexology has helped. (You need to find a really good practitoner). I am still hunting for relief.  This site is a godsend - you think you are the only one in this position.
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Pain clinic got me 4 shots of acupuncture first one yesterday too early to tell trying to claim pip so I can get out of my job my arms get weak and muscle spasms in back of my neck are awfull I take co codomol more than food .
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi inhale my kiss,

    If you can afford it have a private consultation with a neurologist, that way they might have time to give you a better explanation of your options. They probably do not want to operate because it could mean extra strain on adjoining vertebrae for the rest of your life requiring further fusions until you end up with a permanent fused car kcal spine.

    Pain wise I have tried all of the tablets and the best pain control for me, personally, is Gabapentin, Naproxen, Amatryptaline and morphine pain patch, makes pain bearable.

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I'm not from the U.K. but I share your universal problem. I'm from the U.S. This is a great site that I came upon accidentally.

    I'm sorry you have this lousy condition. I've had it for 30 years. It started when I was 17 years old so I understand what it's like to be young but feel like you're 100 years old.. Never even understood how it started. Constant discomfort for many years with no diagnosis because nothing ever showed up on images until recently. The symptoms and so forth are so different for each individual and constantly change. Right?

    I have a bulging disc and 2 left osteophytes with 1 causing moderate neural forminal norrowing. 

    It's a complicated and confusing condition that no one except fellow sufferers can understand. It can be angering and isolating.You're lucky, though it doesn't seem like it, there was no internet when my troubles began so trying to find answers and support was near impossible, just silent suffering and feeling utterly alone.

    It just recently went to a new level that I'm not very happy about and am considering further intervention. For years I've relied on chiropractic though it has  cost  me a small fortune it seems to help me through the flare-ups. I know many discourage it but I believe that it kept me more functional all these years and prevented faster degeneration, though I can't prove it.

    Mine  was very severe at first, like I had taken a serious fall, but I can't recall a serious incident (baffling) to this day. Mine eventually kind of stablized so don't lose hope. 

    I've managed to stay active all these years somehow. I never thought anyone had it worse than me until recently and actually makes me feel like I may have actually been a little bit lucky. I also seem to have an insane pain tolerance and have only recently started taking a mild anti-inflammatory meds.. I still managed to surf and mountain bike (at my own comfort level) despite the discomfort and the risk I knew I was taking. I accepted the excacerbation of symptoms for the joy these activities give me and I realize that not everyone else is capable of doing these things. Far from it. Not sure if I'll be able to anymore myself now. I'm doing a lot of yoga and mobility type excercise and some swimming.

    It's really hard when your young because these things aren't supposed to happen at that age. Your going to hear it from people all the time I'm afraid, they won't understand. It makes everything diificult and people may find you aloof and distant when all you really are is distracted from constant discomfort or pain. I'm still misunderstood but just accept that few will ever truly understand.

    I wish I had good news for you, but there is no cure yet and your going to have to find a way to manage it. For me it felt like I had arthritis for the entire 30 years despite nothing showing up for many years. It's very mysterious and frustrating.

    Hell, I have mild scoliosis of my thoracic and lumbar spine along with it. 

    Manage your stress and try to be positive it may spontaneously calm down and become more manageable. Stress, for me at least, exacerbates symptoms a lot and may help you also.

    Like most Americans I talk too much. Good luck. I'll keep my eye on you.

    Best wishes.

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Brian good for you, I live in the US too and have spent thousands of dollars on trying to get better. I had to quit working as I had such a high stress job and working on a computer with a cervical fusion and a lower back surgery was impossible. I am glad that while I was young I did all those amazing things, surfing, water skiing, I live in California and we are blessed to have such awesome beaches and weather. I hope at 20 she doesn't have the surgery as I think that new treatments are coming and like my neurologist told me the other day spinal fusion is almost now considered barbaric. I should of known better as I not only worked in the field but was a clinical data analyst working on improving patient outcomes. But I was stubborn and thought I was different...lol! I am still fighting to stay as active as I can be as I can't let it beat me. I agree being positive is important but can be hard at times as people look at me and think I am a picture of health they have no idea of what I go through each day. However, I count my blessings as so many people have it so worse than I do that I feel bad even complaining so these groups help as all of you understand! Unless you have walked in our shoes it is hard for others to understand that is just human nature. Nancy

      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi I help run a support group called cervical myelopathy on Facebook. We have over 800 members many who have cervical spondylosis too - are all most welcome to join.
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hello, I can understand the pain and limitations that you are experiencing. I still deal with pain daily, even after I have had my surgery. Be your own advocate. If your doctor isn't helping you the way you believe he should, find another. 

    I had to keep doing this my GP, at the time, until she caved and ordered an MRI which equated to emergency surgery. The neurosurgeon was furious, literally, she said, I was maybe 2 miles worth of walking my way into a wheelchair permanently. My new GP's wife had the same fusion as I did, same location C3-C5. 

    My whole neck experience has taught me that we have to be our own advocates!  Best of luck to you on your journey.

    Report / Delete Reply

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion Reply

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up