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Spinal Cord Disorders Message Board

Spinal Cord Disorders Board Index

I was diagnosed about two years ago at age 45 with cervical degeneration and bones spurs at C5-C6. I went through about 4 weeks of PT which helped the pain to become tolerable. Now about a month ago, the pain came back with a vengeange, with severe limited range of motion in my neck and pain across the shoulder bladers and down my right arm. I'm also having intermittent dizziness and am a little wobbly when I walk. I had another MRI done and this one shows bulging disc with moderate impingement at C5-C6, bulging disc with small mass impingement at C6-C7, and bone spurs (osteophytes) from C4 down through C7. I have to go see a specialist on Wed, the 26th. Anyone gone through this and what were your options? I tried PT again which seemed to exacerbate the symptoms. Any advice would be most appreciated. :)

I am experiencing a similar problem. (I've been fused 2x, L 3-4 thru L 5-S-1). After lifting heavy objects, I started having pain in my cervical spine, pain/numbness in my arm and hand, etc. My dr. thought I had herniation of C 5-6, and ordered MRI. The MRI showed C 5-6 wasn't herniated, but "bulging", also have severe degenerative disc disease, and also severe nerve impingement caused by several bone spurs. I start epidural injections this week, and also have EMG scheduled. Next step is physical therapy. My concern also is that these are temporary fixes, but I hope to get relief. My dr. said he can't rule out surgery down the road. I hope this helps you out, let me know how things work out for you!
I had the samething........ and had surgery done on Dec10,2004. I feel so much better and I got to go back to work after 6 weeks and I am a hairdresser so I stand and use my arms and hands alot. The pain is gone,, I have some sore muscles after I work but I am not taking any pain meds except for tylenol. I wish u the best.
:eek: Well, after looking at my MRI, the specialist told me that normally he gives his patients three choices; 1:wait to see if it gets better,2: traction, 3: or surgery. He said, however, in my case he was only giving one recommendation: surgery. My husband and I asked him many, many questions. I was impressed with him and his credentials. This specialist is only one of about half a dozen surgeons in the US who have done the artificial disc replacement spinal surgery. I will be having an anterior cervical C5-C6, C6-C7 decompression and fusion on February 24th. I chose to use cadavar bones instead of having the bone taken from my hip. He will be using titanium plate for the fusion. He also recommends minimal wearing of a neck brace because he said the titanium is strong enough to support the neck without the brace. I am getting a little nervous, however, I feel I've made the right decision. The pain is really starting to get me down though. I'll just be glad when it's over!!!
carreg - please tell me who/where the specialist is that you mentioned about the artifical disk replacement spinal surgery and how did you find him/her?

My surgeon is Dr. Paul Savas. He is affiliated with MidAtlantic Spine Specialists. They have offices at the Medical College of Virginia and also in Williamsburg, VA. After my family doctor recommended him, I did an online search and found an article about Dr. Savas. I hope this helps.

Hi, I don't know if you remember me, but a couple of weeks ago I was reading one of your posts and you had bulging disc cervical spine problems on the same disks as I have. I have had a AC Disc. on C5/6/7 with donor bone and plates. I was just told 14 months later that my donor bone on C6/7 has disintegrated. At 4 months my surgeon told me that he couldn't help me with my pain that never went away after my surgery he said that he is afraid that I have "fibromyalgia". Not until 14 months later when I went in begging for help did he finally send me for a myelogram!!!! Anyway the question I have for you is, you mentioned in your post that it took quite a long time for them to diagnose a "low grade sinus infection"!!! Did that have anything at all to do with your neck pain. It might seem like a silly question :angel: but I am desperate for answers. I have had a headache for 5 years along with very bad neck pain. I am still feeling exactly the same. My headache feels like it is in my sinuses and at the bridge of my nose, my forehead, in the front of my ears and behind my eyes. I have had every test possible known to man, including a Cat scan of my sinuses and a check up with a ENT specialist and have had my eyes checked. Nothing showed up on any of these tests but 5 years later I feel like it is my sinuses. Just wanted to know what your symptoms were and if you think it is linked in any way to your neck pain. Thanks so much for listening.
Take care
Lyn in Michigan
You could have a sinus infection that does not show up on the Cat Scan of the sinuses. I’ve had some sinus doctors that say that’s impossible, that all sinus infections show up - but others (like an emergency room valuation I had once) say it is possible. I guess I can validate that since the antibiotics helped me – despite the Cat Scan results. The Cat Scan is a means that works for diagnosis for the majority of sinus infections, but not all. This was my problem – mine never showed up. Having your doctor prescribe a 10 day dosage of a good strong antibiotic like Levaquin would take this out of the running for the potential problem. If you have a sinus infection that they’re not picking up, this antibiotic would certainly knock it out. If you don’t, this shouldn’t hurt you anyway.

Sinus/face/neck/head pain can also be caused by the muscles in the neck due to the issues that you have. The only thing I can recommend here is to try to find a solution to the cause of the problem, but Imitrex (migraine med’s) has worked great for my headaches and neck pain (even when they’re not migraines). It takes about 30 minutes for the medicine to start working but it works better than most for pain/headaches.

Don’t give up – you need to find a good diagnostician – a normal internal medicine doctor that is just great diagnosing problems.

Good Luck.

Thanks for your advice on the sinus problems. I went to the doctors today for a sore throat, ears etc. He said that my sinuses look infected and put me on antibiotics but that doesn't usually do anything for my headache. I am going to make another appt. with another ENT. I can't give up, thanks for the advice.

Take Care
Lyn in Michigan :)

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