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Unread 06-07-2010, 06:39 PM   #1
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Unhappy Neck pain and neurological symptoms

Hi, everyone. I had a car accident over 6 years ago, sustaining double whiplash when hit head-on and then from the rear. During physical therapy, I began having severe headaches, and was told by both the PTs and the doctor that the headaches were not accident related. About 6 months later, I was sent to a neurologist (long after the PT was done and I was deemed healthy enough to reenter my job) and was found to have migraine-like headaches that stem from tight muscles in the neck, shoulders, back and around the skull. Over the next 5 1/2 years, I would see 5 chiropractors, two neurologists, and another round of PT, utilizing trigger point therapy, myofacial release techniques, and medications. I have had one 2-month period of being pain-free, when the trigger point treatment and the release techniques converged perfectly, but did not work again. The headaches are constant,typically with a pain level of 3 out of 10, but can reach a 7 or 8 at times. I can experience sensitivity to light and noise during these times.

About 9 months ago, I began to experience frequent nausea, dizziness and lightheadedness, mental confusion, strong difficulty concentrating, racing heart, difficulty breathing, numbness on my left side, poor sleep, and a drooping left eye with strong sensitivity to light. I'm also experiencing a pinching in my right shoulder near the spine. I've been seeing a chiropractic neurologist who believes my body is stuck in fight-or-flight mode and that my right brain is not communicating well with the left half of my body. I was also found to have a yeast infection throughout my body and have been on Candex to balance the body. I have been doing the natural techniques he has prescribed to some extent, but not enough. I am also getting regular massages to help with the tight muscles.

I'm wearing down and the cycle of hope, work and then despair is now back in the despair phase. I fear I will have to quit my independent contract job because I can't fulfill the required 12 hours per week that I'm currently required to do. I have no insurance and my husband is barely self-employed. We do have the support of family, friends, and my job. I'm just so tired a good portion of the time. When I do work, I'm good and effective in the goals. But I procrastinate and have little motivation for the paperwork portion of my job. I typically leave the house for work appts and to do things with friends, about 3 times per week. My parents were so sweet in giving me a little money to get some clothes (I've gained 20 lbs since last summer, no bottoms fit!), but even then it took a month before I could get out of the house to do that, and I LIKE shopping!

Thanks to whomever reads this, and if you have any ideas, please let me know. I want to get better, I hate my life right now!! I just feel so discouraged.
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Unread 06-17-2010, 08:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

(((oneinchrock))) 5 years ago I was t-boned by a truck on the driver's side without side impact airbags and slammed my head and shoulder into the side of my car. Barely a year before, I had been rear ended, standing still, by someone driving very fast. In both accidents, I also sustained very bad whiplash and like you, now suffer from severe migraine headaches as a result of my injuries. I have also had CT scans and MRIs which showed nothing helpful. I have also seen a chirporactor, a neurologist and am dedicated to a massage therapist who specializes in myofascial release, so I DEFINITELY understand and appreciate your story.

About 1 1/2 years ago, I was introduced to a migraine specialist, not a neurologist by background, but a psychiatrist, who is a miracle worker. Her son has fibromyalgia and she also suffers from migraines, which is why she chose to move from practicing psychiatry to practicing pain management. Because of her background and personal experience, she is empathetic and supportive and really gets her patients and what we are going through. She has saved me. Before I started seeing her, my migraines were running my life. I would have anywhere between 3 - 5/week, averaging 7/10 on a pain scale. I couldn't function. We tried several medications to control them and what works for me is a combination of 100mg of topamax 2x/day and Fiorinal as a rescue method and I get injections (like novocaine) in my head when they are really bad. I usually need injections every 2 - 3 months. All of this works for me and has basically given me my life back.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that in my experience, I had to find the right doctor who was willing to keep trying different things with me until we found the right solution. It was a lot of guessing but she was patient and saw me on a regular basis until we had it right. I adore her. Now, I get maybe 1 headache a week and that's it...and I can live with that.

My message to you is simple...don't give up and keep looking for someone who can really help you. Ask anyone you know who suffers from migraines if they are working with someone. That's how I found my doctor - a colleague of mine at work and I were chatting one day and I found out that she suffered just like me. Not only did she help refer me but we created an instant bond and friendship. There's an amazing community of people who are going through the same thing all around you that are more than willing to help. That's the thing about migraineurs - we love to talk about our disease.

Good luck, please keep me posted.

Feddy
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Unread 07-16-2010, 09:38 PM   #3
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

have either of you had anyone mention an atlo-axial ligament complex instability? Those are the ligaments that do the work for the bulk of head movement connected to the top two vertebrae. Ligaments don't heal quickly at all due to the relatively small amount of blood supply.

i have chronic head aches and neck pain/instability now due to hypermbility of those ligaments and yeah, it's taking my life away.
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Unread 07-20-2010, 02:31 PM   #4
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

Little Rhino, how did that happen to you and how were you diagnosed? I have never heard of that before and would really like to learn more. Thank you so much for reaching out!!!
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Unread 07-21-2010, 01:42 PM   #5
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

http://www.spineuniverse.com/anatomy/ligaments

Oneinchrock, I would go back to basics with your headaches, see if there wasn't something I could do about my environment; check to see if what I eat correlates to how I feel, that sort of thing? http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/mig...SECTION=causes

If you don't like your job because a lot of it is paperwork you don't like doing and procrastinate about (which is a holding yourself "back" which causes stress/tension) then I would look for a job that either didn't have that much paperwork or had paperwork I did enjoy? I once took a job because of the paperwork, I wanted to train myself to do it (I was like you and would procrastinate/not do it) whether I "wanted" to or not. It didn't help much :-) but I have since found "paperwork" that I do enjoy and have no trouble doing. Were I you, I'd look at a hobby or volunteering, try to find something on the side you really enjoyed and then try to find a job in that field or extend the hobby to self-employment, etc.
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Unread 08-01-2010, 11:02 AM   #6
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Heart Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

You mentioned going to psyscians and chiropractors, have you had a recent MRI of your Cervical Spine? If not that may answer a lot of questions as to the pain and the migraines. I was never properly diagnosed with my neck conditions until I had multiple MRI's of my Cervical Spine and it explained alot. Also have you checked into Pain Management, since you have been through failed PT and on medications perhaps a Pain management specialist could help to find the proper regiment to keep your migranes down and your pain level down, but I really would have an MRI if you have not had one in the past year or so. My MD tried to tell me that there was no way my cervical spinal stenosis and DDD could be getting worse but in only a years time the MRI showed very much change in my Cervical Spine and why I was in so much pain. I wish you the best of luck in finding relief and answers, don't give up hope.
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Unread 08-02-2010, 11:06 PM   #7
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I truly believe that having sever neck issues is life impacting. Like if you can't properly use your feet, and your arms are always numb....Its difficult and life is much differnt.
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Unread 02-18-2011, 03:51 PM   #8
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

Quote:
Originally Posted by feddy View Post
(((oneinchrock))) 5 years ago I was t-boned by a truck on the driver's side without side impact airbags and slammed my head and shoulder into the side of my car. Barely a year before, I had been rear ended, standing still, by someone driving very fast. In both accidents, I also sustained very bad whiplash and like you, now suffer from severe migraine headaches as a result of my injuries. I have also had CT scans and MRIs which showed nothing helpful. I have also seen a chirporactor, a neurologist and am dedicated to a massage therapist who specializes in myofascial release, so I DEFINITELY understand and appreciate your story.

About 1 1/2 years ago, I was introduced to a migraine specialist, not a neurologist by background, but a psychiatrist, who is a miracle worker. Her son has fibromyalgia and she also suffers from migraines, which is why she chose to move from practicing psychiatry to practicing pain management. Because of her background and personal experience, she is empathetic and supportive and really gets her patients and what we are going through. She has saved me. Before I started seeing her, my migraines were running my life. I would have anywhere between 3 - 5/week, averaging 7/10 on a pain scale. I couldn't function. We tried several medications to control them and what works for me is a combination of 100mg of topamax 2x/day and Fiorinal as a rescue method and I get injections (like novocaine) in my head when they are really bad. I usually need injections every 2 - 3 months. All of this works for me and has basically given me my life back.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that in my experience, I had to find the right doctor who was willing to keep trying different things with me until we found the right solution. It was a lot of guessing but she was patient and saw me on a regular basis until we had it right. I adore her. Now, I get maybe 1 headache a week and that's it...and I can live with that.

My message to you is simple...don't give up and keep looking for someone who can really help you. Ask anyone you know who suffers from migraines if they are working with someone. That's how I found my doctor - a colleague of mine at work and I were chatting one day and I found out that she suffered just like me. Not only did she help refer me but we created an instant bond and friendship. There's an amazing community of people who are going through the same thing all around you that are more than willing to help. That's the thing about migraineurs - we love to talk about our disease.

Good luck, please keep me posted.

Feddy

I just wanted to agree with you on the topomax it saved me also .I had a neck injury and I too was having 3-5 times a week severe migrains from it now maybe 1 every 2-3 months .My neurologist is good on going to conferences etc, and learned about it before it was actually approved for prevention of migraines and prescribed it to me before then but it definately made a huge difference. I too take 100mg 2x a day.
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Unread 02-18-2011, 08:33 PM   #9
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

It's possible that your jaw was also involved, if not directly in the accident, then in clenching during or after the accident. That can also cause headaches and neck spasms, radiating down the shoulder and arm etc. It's unbelievable all the symptoms TMD can cause, and you may have more of them than I or you have listed.

Why not have a dental check up with an orthodontist who is trained for TMD (TMJD temporo mandibular joint dysfunction.) A night splint (mouth guard) just for you to wear at night might help relieve more of your pain.

(It's rarely just one thing with me...)

Hope you feel better soon, everyone!
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Unread 02-19-2011, 07:03 AM   #10
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Default Re: Neck pain and neurological symptoms

Hi "oneinchrock" ~ Since you're having some cervical symptoms, PLEASE be careful about seeing this chiropractor! Any kind of manipulation can cause you BIG PROBLEMS. Two different neurosurgeons told me that any manipulation can end up putting you in a wheelchair and/or paralyzed. So they both warned me to stay away from chiropractors.

You may benefit from a pain management doctor. Get a referral from your doctor and see what they can do for you, IF you haven't already gone to one.

I pray you can find some relief for your pain. I know how horrible it is. I've been a chronic pain patient for 26 years now, and there are days I just want to SCREAM!! Best of luck and God bless. Hugs, Lee
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