PMRGCAuk
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How far do I go with this?

How far do I go with this?

Hi folks, I'm new with you and am interested in getting some feedback.

I had an Xray of my neck recently because of nerve pain in my shoulder. It showed

a degeneration of discs cervical 2 and 3 causing bone to bone rubbing and some impingement of the nerve. Okay, I'm 75, and I expect that I would have some arthritis and degeneration. It hurts enough to give me the jitters some times... some times it just aches and feels unsupported. The doctor I saw wants to do an MRI to learn more. I'm a little scared that he'll want to suggest some surgery which I am opposed to.

Should I have the MRI just for the info? What else could be done besides surgery to reduce the pain? Does anyone know? Thanks for your input. Mia

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I have had X-rays and MRIs of my neck, way before PMR. All look awful and explained a lot of my pain. Went to chronic pain clinic. Took meds for nerve pain. My pain was mostly in my neck which had reduced range of motion and up the back of my head and around my ears. Botox into my trapeziusband, neck and back of my head really helped me. It has been a miracle. I go every five months. It takes about fifteen minutes. Insurance pays. My pain might originate from degeneration in my neck, but the muscle spasms that resulted we're what made me miserable. The botox stopped the spasms for me.

If I were you, I'd get the MRI too. You don't have to agree to surgery if you don't think it is right for you. But you will have more info for considering alternatives.

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Thanks for all that information, Rose54. Very helpful. I never thought of Botox, but it makes total sense! I'll ask my doctor about that and see where that goes.

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P.S. What exactly is PMR??

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Agree with Hindags

Have it done so you know more and see what treatment is available

I too had severe pain in neck X Rays showed Arthritis but Physio exercises really helped although at the time I really thought I would be wasting their time and mine .

Good Luck

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Thanks for your ideas.. I'll check with my doctor and see what we can line up.

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Hello,

With a decision of this magnitude I would get as much info as possible. Agreeing to more diagnostic info does not mean you are agreeing to surgery. Having an MRI should help you to feel better about your decision to have surgery. If you can see the problem and they can explain what they want to do you might feel more reassured. If you can see exactly what is going on but decide not to have surgery it may help with choice of appropriate available pain control methods. Finally it would give a picture with which to compare should you be at this stage further down the line having declined surgery this time.

Good Luck

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You're right.. getting information doesn't mean having surgery. In my head I know that but I guess I'm facing my fears of having chronic pain and trying not to let THAT get the best of me.

I'm living in Mexico now and have been impressed with the attention and care so far. Drs at home (Oregon) never connected my shoulder pain with my neck... we thought that it was the rotator cuff injury that was causing it, but now I see the connection.

Anyhow, I'll deal with it, get the MRI and go from there.

Thanks!

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Hey SnazzyD.. I hear you and agree that a step by step approach is the best. I am scheduled for the MRI tomorrow and then will meet with a "specialist" to go over the results. and create a treatment plan.

More to follow.

Thanks for the support. Means alot to know that there are others out there who know what I'm talking about !!!

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Ask physio about sleeping in a soft neck brace and/Or exercises. I couldn't surface with the one where you GENTLY push chin slightly back. I feel it release tension down back of neck. 10 of those and I feel better but please check with physio.

I tend to sleep semi upright in bed and can tell if I don't. I feel.your apprehension. At last x-ray was told similar but said no surgical intervention yet. I have hung onto that for years.

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Hi Piglette, I'll be having the MRI tomorrow. Meanwhile, cold packs, hot showers and avoiding alot of shake, rattle and roll!

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Hi Bethy, I think if I were offered an MRI I would take it. At least then you may have some sort of diagnosis. It will also be easier to make a decision about the next step that you may want to take.

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Hi Piglette,

You're right.. isn't is silly how we try to hide our head in the sand when we're afraid?? Thanks for the support and the sane sensible advise. Will follow. Bethy

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MRI scheduled for tomorrow... drum roll please!!!!

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MRI scheduled for tomorrow.... drum roll, please!!!!!!

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It all depends what is causing it - and without an MRI you probably can't really be certain. You can't have surgery without signing a consent form - if you don't want surgery then you don't sign.

However - are you in the right place? We all have polymyalgia rheumatica or giant cells arteritis so aren't too up on shoulder problems other than our own! Polymyalgia rheumatica, PMR, is an autoimmune disorder that causes bursitis and sore/stiff muscles amongst other symptoms. Luckily it responds very well to corticosteroids.

And just to say - my friend has had superb orthopaedic surgery in Mexico - but never have surgery until all conservative approaches have been exhausted.

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I certainly wouldn't consent to surgery until all else had been exhausted... have to get the right diagnosis first..the body is all connected as we know and there's inflammation where trauma has visited... will set the ball in motion and see my primary doctor today

to get to the right specialist... and of course, get the MRI.

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MRI on Thursday... then we'll surely know more.

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MRI scheduled for tomorrow... drum roll please!!! Then I'll have a consult with a "specialist" and create a treatment plan. I will surely ask this person about Botox and cortisone..

Much appreciate the support from those in the know... even if it isn't PMR, it sounds close to that, and the treatment is probably pretty close.

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I don't know if anyone suggested physiotherapy. Yes you need to know exactly what's going on with your neck. If you are anything like me you can then head over to a good physiotherapist and get some treatment to help. Over the years I've had acupuncture and have been given simple, if excruciatingly boring, exercises, both of which helped. There are other modalities also which may be appropriate or not in your case. I've also had dry needling to reset spasmed muscles so they are not so tight and causing more pain, and currently my physiotherapist gives me gentle mobilization and I have received low intensity light therapy which should assist with healing. And I do my exercises, have done for many years. (I do have severe arthritis in my neck as well as PMR.)

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Physical therapists can do miracles when misalignments are pulling muscles the wrong way. Try it first. It's fun.

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Yes, I agree that PT can do miracles... IF you do the exercises and follow up... I do receive massage from a therapeutic masseur and he does really good work. Just for the circulation alone I know that it helps.

My trouble is with bone mostly; degeneration and a narrowing of disc cartilage in my neck added onto a torn rotator cuff that has given me tendinitis and bursitis and some nerve impingement... painful stuff.

I shall have the MRI tomorrow and find out what is recommended and what I'm willing to do; all on the conservative side. Thanks for you two cents worth!! Much appreciated.

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Please let us know.

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I would definitely have the MRI forewarned is forearmed but I would also learn everything possible before surgery and try anything alternative. acupuncture and massage ... physiotherapy etc. You look very fit and have probably tried some of this..but you never know! .. my friend SWEARS by the acupuncture and chiropractic but I am hesitant to have chiropractic manipulations on my neck..... at this age.. and with these bones!

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Hi Yogabonnie,

I totally agree with you... I had the MRI done and now, Monday, I'll get the results... and see what conservative approach we can come up with. I live in Mexico now, and I have not found an acupuncturist as yet. I'm leaning towards a shot of cortisone, just to stop the inflammatory process long enough to relax.. and someone else suggested botox; sounds interesting too, since there is nerve impingement issues... Onward and upward... even though I am fit,

there's no getting away from a body wearing down.... Still feel lucky that this is all I've got to deal with!! Many are much worse off.!!

Thanks for your comments. Mia

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