Cervical DDD multiple slipped disks,moderate stenosis, nerve compression, bone spurs, just need a chat!!

Hi there I'm a newbie to this site I think it would help having people to talk to who are familiar with my situation or similar issues. I have five disk's in my neck that have lost there water & two of which are impinging a c4 left lateral nerve root and a c8 these disks all have tears prolapses or protrusions one of which is so close to my spinal cord that its very almost touching it. Iv been on the waiting list for pain clinic iv been told to expect an 18 month wait and this was in February! I v done the whole shabam physio, ice, muscle rubs, heat wraps, I take medication such as ibuprofen paracetamol, dihydrocodine, oramorph & occasionally diazepam. I m quite fit & eat lots of fruits and veggies. Iv also had 6 sessions of acupuncture on the Nhs I use tens machine. Well the pain is getting worse it now affects my eyes I get blurred vision, i get tinnitus and terrible right arm and shoulder pain and weakness I paid privately to see a top orthopedic surgeon for his recommendation he tells me that surgery is not recommended as its too risky plus there's multiple disk damage so it would be more than one operation over numerous years there's no guarantee that it will help with the pain so iv been offered facet joint injections on my c4 left joint and my c7 right which causes all the arm shoulder pain.i also have a curvature of the thoracic spine plus a depression of mid thorax. Has anyone had relive from these jabs ?Had anyone got similar symptoms ?im always in chronic pain but I try not to take the medication Daily but then when I get flare ups I usually take the meds every day for a couple of weeks I don't want to become dependant. I now have to have a scan on my lumbar & sacral spine as I get burning and numbness in my legs are my big toe on the right is totally numb does anyone have any questions or suggestions someone said it could all be coming from my neck all the leg and toe problems please my family don't understand and I don't have any friends other than work colleagues who I only see on weekends thanks in advance what should I do? Sorry for ranting I just feel usless and messed up I have to be at my best as I have three kids who need me one of which is 2 yr old Best of luck for all :-)

28 Replies

  • Hello Kitchard,

    Welcome to HealthUnlocked. I'm sure you will find lots of helpful information and support from our wonderful members.

    Bets wishes


  • Hello, you've come to the right sight for 'chatting' about pain!! I can understand your situation to a point as I have ddd in my lumbar spine. Three discectomies, nerve root crushed from first prolapse so now have numb right leg and drop foot and chronic pain. Now it's creeping up into thoracic spine (the bugger)!!

    I used to be a nurse and had to be retired before the age of 40 because of it all. Yes it's awful, tiring, unfair and life changing but we've got to live with it. Unless there's a sudden miracle cure, the pain will always be with us but this site will give you that little feeling of

    "Blimey, I thought it was just me that's going through this s#@t"

    As you post, people appear out of the 'lonely mist' and you'll realise that, as I've already stated, there are others out here/there that you can relate, chat, moan and rant to!!

    Regarding pain management - it's so individual but people can tell you their experiences (good & bad) but unfortunately we have to make our own decisions most of the time. The only advice I can give, being a newbie on here too is research stuff and ask questions on here and it's pretty much guaranteed that someone will answer.......

  • Thank you for replying I know I hate not being able to do things I used to do take care god bless :-)

  • Welcome. I don't suffer this kind of pain but this forum has been a solace to me in times of need, especially when you need a good rant. Just communicating with people who live with chronic pain and knowing that you are not alone and not crazy - just human. Keep ranting. We are all here to listen xxx


  • Hi again, forgot to say, I've had facet joint injections but in lumbar spine - they worked for a few days but that's it. If your legs and toes are becoming tingly and numb, it's probable it's the lumbar area that's affected.

    I use a mixture of regular and as and when needed meds - I try to leave gaps so the strong ones take better effect after not having it for a few days. Just keep asking for a review of your meds and their effect and side effects.

    My pain management clinic is excellent - I get to see a consultant psychologist in pain and the anaesthetist lead in pain management. There's also a nurse in the clinic but I don't see her. Like I've said, hang in there and once you get to the clinic, really let them know how it affects you and YOUR life. Which strategies are best for you? etc, etc.

    Best of luck


  • Yes I will really looking forward to seeing someone who specialises in pain.

  • I am surprised you haven't been referred to a neurosurgeon with a view to having a lamenectomy operation on your neck to relieve the compression on the nervous system which untreated will lead to loss of feeling in legs and feet. Have you not had a IRM Scan.

    I was diagnosed with stenosis and spinal compression three years ago and had this surgery . I now walk normally but was left with damaged nerve pain in my hands for which there is no cure but things would have been much worse without the surgery. I hope you can find the right treatment. Good luck.

  • Well I saw an orthopaedic surgeon who I paid to see privately as the last ortho surgeon I saw on the nhs basically said that injections are too risky and im too young for an operation which would be a fusion i think I was being fobbed off!! But now iv paid to see someone there willing to give me two facet joint injections I was advised againsta cervical fusion by the nhs specialist as the adjacent disks would soon fail under pressure. Im waiting to see pain specialist atm I just don't like the idea of taking a cocktail of drus apparently I can't have an op to remove some of the disk and or bone spur without the fusion. Thanks for your input. Are you living in the UK or Us im in Uk :-)

  • I had an mri what's a irm? Are your problems in your cervical spine?

  • See an Alexander Teacher post haste. Alexander Technique will not cure the problem. It will however help you control the muscular behaviour which makes the problem worse.

    Tinnitus could be an ear wax problem.

    McTimony chiropractic can help reduce any muscle spasms which make the pain and discomfort worse.

    Meditation and Mindfulness are techniques for helping you study how your own body reactes to things. You cannot change the past development of the health disability. You change the things you do which makes the pain and discomfort worse than need be.

    Hope this has been helpful.

  • Thanks Johnsmith. I used to go for Mc timmony chiropractior adjustments regularly and it did clear up my bad backpain for around 15 months that's when I was at my fittest it also enabled me to have a child who is now 2 but I made a horrible mistake of seeing a regular chiropractor who was closer to home when my Mc timmony chiropractor was on a pilgrimage, I was complaning of neck pain so I had weekly brutal cracks to my neck made weekly for a couple of months and one session I came out with a swollen muscle on the left side of my neck and bad tinnitus which I have had ever since and that was 2 yrs & 7 months ago. I went back complaining but he said he happens sometimes and will settle down but it has gotten worse over time. Im not sure if he had caused all the problems with my neck but he definitely made it worse. I did trust my mc timmony chiropractior but its very expensive I did also try cranalsacral therapy which uses gentle pressure on certain points in the head and neck to reglate the spinal fluid I didn't get much relief with this. Have you tried or heard about reiki? Combined with acupuncture maybe I want to try natural remedies before my last resort of trusting pain medication thanks :-)

  • Sorry I did not reply earlier. I only know about replies if they come through the reply entry to the comment.

    The chiropractor should not have given you weekly sessions. There needs to be a two week gap between sessions. This gives muscle time to settle and adapt to the new positions as well as recover from any bruising.

    You have ground for complaint to the Chiropractor regulatory body. It sounds like the chiropractor did something in the treatment they should not have and palmed you off with the it will settle down.

    If the chiropractor has made an error they should pay for someone to put it right. ie a McTimony Chiropractor.

    I have heard about reiki. I know about the energies, but not sure if reiki can help muscle that is not moving as it should. For muscle to move as it should the brain, spinal cord and proprioception needs to be working together in the most efficient manner. I cannot see how reiki can do this as movement is largely under the control of the brain. Reiki may make you feel better at the time it is given, but long term I don't know.

  • As for mindfulness techniques I would like to try those but am a stay at home mum & have very limited help. Do you know if there are any online courses I could do in the evening's ?

  • Tinnitus is frequently the result of neck problems. Google will show you many studies. Neck surgery often has the by product of curing the tinnitus. Again, google it. I would definitely, definitely ask for a neurosurgical opinion on that neck and spine. No orthopod would mess about with my central nervous system ! I cant see why your gp shouldn't refer you.

  • Yes hi there, I did ask one of the Drs at my surgery to refer me to a neurosurgeon but he laughed at me and said a ortho Dr is fine but this is the same orho Dr that said injections are too risky in the neck but im definitely going to fight my corner with another Dr as all the symptoms om getting are nerve related if anything I would need a nerve block as well as facet joint injection don't you think. Do you live in the UK or the Us? As it's different in these countries kind regards Katie :-)

  • Katie, I'm in the UK. Wherever we live, doctors shouldn't be laughing at our suggestions!

  • Yes I know he made me feel awful also telling me that a medication I suggested was out of the question because of its price. I'll never see that Gp again.

  • Oh my I would phone the practise manager and complain cheeky git!!!

  • You will know more about your pain than anyone else on the planet. Let that give you strength. God knows, we need it.

  • God bless to you and thank you for your advice :-)

  • Hi have u had an MRI scan ?? I have the same symptoms in my neck, arms and leg u need to b referred to s neurosurgeon h I have syringomyelia ( look it up ) I hope u can get things sorted soon I know the pain we suffer is bad and can wear u down all the time but with the right meds we can try to live with it!!! Hugs to u c

  • Thanks Livia-15 yes I had a cervical mri Last year which determined the results. Im now due to have another mri on my lumbar and sacral spine tomorrow afternoon to see if that's the cause of the leg burning and leg weakness & toe numbness. . What meds do you take for syringomyelia? What does the condition entail? Im seeing a gp at my local dr surgery this morning to discuss different stronger medication and possibly anti epileptic drugs eg, Gabapentin or pregabaliin iv been on pregabaliin before but my condition wasn't as bad then as it is now so I came off them. Do you have any experiences with these types of medication. I have three kids and im getting touchy with them including my partneri try to be nice but atm my paitience is 0 % due to the amount of pain and disintrest because as soon as i try to do something the pain gets worse, Oromorph is hardly touching the nerve pain. Kind regards Katie.

  • Hi Katie have u looked this up yet it's very rare illness that can only be picked up by a MRI scan ? Many doctors have never heard of this , I have fluid in my spinal cord which should not b there and it's pressing on my nerves which is why I have such server pain . I also have what they call chiari malformation need to look that up also that way u will understand better, the Meds I am on r gabapentin 1200mg 3 times a day , tramsdol 100mg 4 times s day and amatripelin 75mg at night but still in a lot of pain , now under a pain clinic . Hope u find something that helps u soon , let us know how u get on . Take care Linda ,

  • If it's any help I had facet joint injections, they do one side to decide if you're suitable for the denervation which follows. They did ease the pain so I then paid for the denervation. Turned out to be a nightmare, caused cps where the muscles are thrown into a spasm that won't release. Then tried trigger point injections as a last hope.

    The relief lasted a few hours only unfortunately. So back to square one. All my cervical

    Discs have degenerated 5/6, 7/8 especially bad. Keep hoping they'll be some treatment I'll find somewhere!!

  • Ktchard all your nerve pain ,stenosis,blurred vision ,tinnitus,numbness,depression are all signs of your body screaming out for Vit b12 which causes the myelin sheath ( insulation) to strip from the nerves in your body causing memory & hearing loss,numbness.Like me you obvious have had symptons & wasnt told why.2yrs ago I saw 15 drs including 7 specialists & not one even recognised my neuro symptons with a vitamin deficiency it was a diligent Holistic Gp that pinned it in 2 visits.Mind you I had 2 brain & thyroid scans,battery of blood & urine tests all ok.proir to being diagnosed.There is a epidemic worldwide happening because of misdiagnosis.Google YouTube view "diagnosing & treating Vit b12."Sally Pacholok's book Could it be B12 ? Is my lifesaver which has led me to diagnosis 10 others.I have genetic mutation MTHFR which depletes B12 .Vegans & vegetarians are at high risk of B12 deficiency is it only in animal products.Recommended blood tests Serum B12,holo active B12,homocysteine,folate,ferritin,iron,,MMA ,Vit D.If B12 is < 500 then you require instant supplements.

  • I'm so sorry you are going through such a difficult time. It is a physical and emotional battle and being on this site has really helped me because you don't feel alone. I have upper back and neck issues and it has devastated my life. The pain is constant, I first went to physical therapy then pain mgmt, chiropractic care and now I'm doing osteopathic treatment. That has been the most successful so far, but I can not manage day to day tasks and are on Vicodin and oxycodone. I know what you mean when you e tried everything massage hot and cold compresses it's a never ending cycle. I've heard that about surgery's with the success rate of being minimal. Can I ask how long you've been dealing with this? Your not alone! It's just so very difficult when family and friends don't understand sometimes that's half the battle. I hope your feeling better at least now.


  • Hi there I'd like to thank you for responding to my post, iv had terrible pain in my back ever since I had my second child I was 21 but prior to that a heavy piece of metal fell in between my shoulder blades whilst I v doing my shoe laces up.i was 15 hospital sent me home vwith no scan however I didn't feel much back pain until 6 years later.i tried all sorts of medication from anti inflammatorys tramadol, co codamol, amitryptiline, none of which seemed to help i now take gabapentin 300mg ×2 daily, dihydrocodine & oramorph when needed which has been a lot latley. Anyways i used to see a chiropractor in 2014 for the back pain butvi think i was having far too many neck adjustments ×2 weekly which led to me having terrible tinnitus and a painful swollen neck its never been the same since im so annoyed i shouldnt have let him adjust my neck that many times but i just took his word that it would help. Oh well its happened now. I have terrible arm and shoulder pain along with the local neck pain and back pain from the back injury. Do you really think a vitamin could help me? I do take a multi vit and dont eat red meat but i eat chicken and lots of oily fish and leafy greens. Im waiting for facet joint injections at my c7 & c4 do you know what i should expect im so nervous. Sorry for turning this message into a small book . The gabapentin are making me feel out of control i go back and see my gp i font like the way i feel. Lots of hugs katie☺

  • Well the results from my lumbar & sacral spine all came back normal so i know the problems with my legs and feet are something differant well im still taking the gabapentin & i go up to 900 mg on thursday feel a bit odd though like a little moody and co ordination is off but il pursevere. Dr is sending me for am mri of my thoracic spine to see if theres any compression of nerves or any mechanical problemsor changes since 2009. Which is good. Im a bit annoyed because when i asked my gp to see what was happening with pain clinic wasnt even placed on the list as one dr already thought i had been refered but i never was bloody drs!! So i have asked if there is any cancellations to bear me in mind. I have accupuncture at the end of the month so lets tackle this pain even if just s little take care everyone ☺

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