Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

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Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby TammyM on 05 Aug 2009, 02:56

Hi,

Can you all tell me how common neck stiffness and very tight muscles throughout the neck and shoulders are among all of you. I have some cervical spine issues (a rupture c6 and herniation c5) which is what I thought was leading to all this dizziness, the doc says I am sitting on a nerve but doesn't seem to think it's the problem. I have always ignored my headaches they were something I could cope with and work off until this neck business kicked in, it seems the tighter the neck the worse the dizzies and headache. I get conflicting info from the docs one says nerve issues another says stress and posture (I guard myself very carefully when walking by tightning up or hunching) cause the tightness. Is there a way to find out which it is? Do any of you have this problem? It has been suggested to get an EMG, anyone had one?
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby benh on 05 Aug 2009, 03:01

Hi Tammy, I do get stiff neck and general soreness in my neck area fairly regularly since I had my MAV crash about a year ago now. I am always moving my head (slowly) around to loosen it up. I think that it is yet another symptom for me. I did have an EMG on my left side (arms and legs). They did it to rule out a perferal nerve issues. It wasnt too bad - they stuck small needles in my skin and then put a low voltage charge through them. Good luck! Ben
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby TammyM on 05 Aug 2009, 03:14

benh,

Did it take long to conduct the test? Did it reveal any conclusive answers for you? I have heard they aren't always really accurate but I think I understand that it could tell if my neck/nerve is causing the problem or not. I am so sick of Doctors that I don't have any clue what to do. My left side is the bigger problem though, the stiffness and tightness and kinda numbness is even on the side of my face and ear as well upper arm. I hope the test is reliable it doesn't sound like much fun, but I went through childbirth so I can handle it if it can lead to an answer!!
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby benh on 05 Aug 2009, 03:33

Tammy, the test took about 40 minutes and it only showed that I didnt have a periferal nerve problem...not much help but it did rule out some things. It was a little uncomfortable but not too bad. With your situation, I would hope that it could pinpoint whether that is your issue or at least an issue. It surr would be nice if all of the Drs could instill more confidence....good luck!
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby Timeless on 05 Aug 2009, 08:22

I had this problem when all this first started but with the lifestyle changes and PT it is a lot better. Part of the therapy involved deep massage. Plus I have also had injections for the disc problems.
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby caglenn on 05 Aug 2009, 09:07

I know I can always tell if my posture has been poor at the computer. I feel it in my neck and between my shoulder blades. I leave the computer and consciously work on my posture.

I am also quite aware that I have a tendency to not move my head. I get sick when I turn my head! Isn't it interesting that the semi-circular canals and C1/C2 are anatomically at the same plane? Sometime when I am feeling better, I will have someone look at my neck.

Claudia
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby joseph0952 on 05 Aug 2009, 09:21

Tammy,

I also have tightness in the neck and shoulders. I recently went for professional massage (twice) and that gave me some help. I plan to return soon. Also...i will be going to physical therapy at the VA hospital starting next week..i think i will receive 5-6 sessions over a 6 week period. I don't believe they massage but there is some electrical stimulation and other stuff they do. I believe all this strained/stiffness in the neck and shoulders has some relation to the MAV..but i'm also at the computer alot too and that aggravates the condition.

Joe
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby MAVNY on 05 Aug 2009, 09:23

I always suffer from neck tightness/pain which I attribute to my neck "perceiving" my head as too heavy. I do warm heat wraps multiple times a day to try to keep things as loose as possible. I'm sure some stretching could help as well.
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby TammyM on 05 Aug 2009, 09:39

Hi everyone, thank you all for the suggestions and advice. I currently am doing some physical therapy for my neck, stretching exercises, it's really hard to get going because like Lisa my head feels too heavy to hold up and sometimes I swear I'm falling over. I'm trying to perservere!!! I got one of those handheld electric vibrating massagers and use it a couple times a day. I do also have some muscle relaxants (baclofen) but they seem to make the dizzies worse so I don't like to take them.I do think the stretching helps, they seem a little looser and the knots are a little smaller. I'll keep at it!
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby scott on 05 Aug 2009, 09:53

Tammy --

Stiff neck muscles and shoulders is the way my migraine rears it's ugly head. I've never had the one-sided throbbing pain stuff. When the muscles in the neck are bad enough it causes referred pain into my head -- like a tension-type headache. I can trigger these headaches within 30 minutes of eating the wrong foods. Coffee pushes the buttons very quickly and will cause my neck to feel like a trainwreck the entire next day.

Not unusual at all. If you dig deeper, there are nerves and blood vessels that inervate the neck area that are all tied up with the migraine response. Gotta love this junk eh?

Scott
Probable vestibular neuritis in 2003 which kicked off chronic migrainous vertigo.
Treatment: lifestyle mods, low-dose paroxetine, valium as required.
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby cmoc on 05 Aug 2009, 18:51

Same as Scott. Often say, its like having a migraine in the neck. Left side worse with me, pins and needles shoulder and neck, stiff neck pain, really bad, when migraines are bad. I used to have this a lot more than of recent. Lately, I havent had so many major migraines and therefore less neck trouble.

What do they mean when they say, "sitting on a nerve". I have had coccyx trouble for years and read once that someones headaches got better, when they had the coccyx sorted out. Unfortunately, they cant sort mine out, but I feel nerve pain in the bum when sitting often.

Christine
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby TammyM on 05 Aug 2009, 23:30

Christine,

I am not exactly sure what sitting on a nerve means, it's my understanding that the herniated disc in my neck is shifted to the left and pressing against a nerve that runs through there. The docs say it's not that bad, apparently for it to be bad you have to have shooting pains down your arm(s). I don't have shooting pains but there is mumbness, a little tingling sometimes and a mystery itch on my left palm. I guess with proper PT I should be able to realign my spine and it can get off my nerve. I'm working on the PT it's hard on bad days because it DOES give me a headache which gets me upset which makes the headache and dizziness worse! The Physical Therapist called it a viscious cycle.

Funny you should mention the tailbone. I too have had tailbone trouble for a while and was able to keep it from really being a problem by sitting right, walking and just gnerally keeping physically busy. Now with this stinking vertigo my tailbone issues are back, keeping physicall busy is kind of hard. I never really complained about this to the docs. I am going to ask the therapist for some exercises for it.

I think Scott, you are RIGHT on with my neck, I think it causes the worst of my headaches. I've told the docs from the beginning that I think the two are related but they look at me like I'm nuts. I'm so tired of the docs!!!

I thank all of you so much!! Having this support from all of you is making this a bit easier to deal with. Knowing I'm not crazy brings me some peace. I pray for all of us every day.
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby Timeless on 06 Aug 2009, 06:48

Have they ever suggested injections for your neck it really helped mine along with the therapy and she did the deep massage as part of the therapy.
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby TammyM on 06 Aug 2009, 07:24

Injections were mentioned as a possibility. What do the injections do? Do they actually loosen the muscles up or do they just take the pain away. I'm not really complaining about the pain all that much but if these knots and tightnness are causing ANY of this dizziness I want them gone. My husband uses one of those handheld massagers on my shoulders every evening (and sometimes my daughter will during the day) and it seems to help. That Baclophen stuff is to strong for me so I'm going to ask the doc about Valium to get over the rough patches mentally and physically.
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Re: Neck Stiffness, Tight Muscles

Postby Timeless on 06 Aug 2009, 08:23

TammyM wrote:Injections were mentioned as a possibility. What do the injections do? Do they actually loosen the muscles up or do they just take the pain away. I'm not really complaining about the pain all that much but if these knots and tightnness are causing ANY of this dizziness I want them gone. My husband uses one of those handheld massagers on my shoulders every evening (and sometimes my daughter will during the day) and it seems to help. That Baclophen stuff is to strong for me so I'm going to ask the doc about Valium to get over the rough patches mentally and physically.


The injections gave me pain relief and relaxed the neck in the process , however the deep massage also helped a good bit with the relaxing the tight ness and stiffness.

I could not take the medication so this was a better fit for me.
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