C7 Cervical Vertebra Pain
I’ve been dealing with terrible neck and upper back pain ever since having the allergy test about five weeks ago. I had to remain still on my stomach for 20 minutes on a very narrow treatment table of some kind. I had no comfortable way to place my head and arms. It was excruciating!
I’ve been trying to calm down my jangled nerves and strained muscles by using muscle relaxers. On days when the pain was particularly overwhelming I’ve taken a Lortab – but never more than once a day. I’ve been sleeping on a hot pad and using it behind my upper back while seated all day long. I use an ergonomically designed back support and neck cushion, and they help a lot when I’m sitting.
My pain level has decreased very little in all this time, so I went to see my Orthopedist yesterday. The X-rays show that all the hardware and area around it from my cervical fusion surgery looks good and stable. That was a HUGE relief! But it does show more deterioration in the vertebrae lower in my neck and in my upper back. That’s my Osteopenia doing it’s thing. No telling what that would look like if I had not taken Forteo for two years. I’m on Prolia now, plus I’ve taken calcium supplements for years.
Also, the spurs on my thoracic vertebrae are more prominent. That’s old age arthritis doing it’s dirty work and certainly explains some of the pain.
When I saw the x-rays I assumed he would say that my pain is coming from across my shoulder blades and the neck pain was referred pain. Quite the contrary, he said it was typical C7 cervical vertebra pain being referred to right below the shoulder blades.
He suggested physical therapy – I said I didn’t need to go as I knew all the exercises – Now that I know the hardware and neck bones around it are OK – I’ll exercise at home.
He suggested an epidural – but I want to try exercise first. And I’m still planning to have sinus surgery in a few weeks. He agreed it would be best to have that taken care of before scheduling an epidural.
I asked for something between aspirin and Lortab for the pain. He suggested several meds that I can’t take – mostly because of gastric issues and one that I’ve had a severe reaction to. So then he suggested Gabapentin. THAT I CAN TAKE, so I have that prescription now.
And he said it was OK to take the Lortab if I had to. But I still don’t want to use it if I can possibly avoid it.
I have a long relationship with this Orthopedist, and he’s leaving it up to me when to come back for another appointment. I appreciate doctors who listen to their patients and treat them like human beings.