Since 2011 I have neck pain which gradually becomes more severe as the time goes by. In October of 2014 I decided I have had the last straw and went to the doctor who prescribed me Naproxen and an MRI. The Naproxen gave absolutely zero relieve and the MRI came back negative. I then went to physical therapy and a chiropractor a couple of times but still no relieve. I was then sent to Sports Medicine who prescribed me Trimadol ( Ultram), Tizanidine and a Trigger Point injection. That following Monday I went to get my Trigger Point injection and was prescribed Gabapentin which so far as been a little over a week and still have absolutely no relief, my pain has now moved down from my neck to my upper back and my neck now has a stiff feeling. I just don't understand what can be causing my pain and everyone has said it's muscle related but every medication I have taken has given me no relief and I am asking what could potentially be next?
I have 2 bad disk in my neck, physical therapy used ten's unit and took Naproxen but they told me until I worked all the information out I would be in pain, took about a year, and it would give me cluster headache's, move into my shoulder and down my arm, I know the pain sometimes gets to you and you see no end in sight, work with it as much as you can, I'm praying you'll get better soon, oh they had me to apply heat to it after exercise that help some to.
I also have severe neck pain which has contributed to severe migraines. I have gotten tremendous relief from trigger point injections and from physical therapy exercises which I do myself. Perhaps you didn't get a good enough physical therapist. And if you only had 2 appointments with the physical therapist, that means that you probably only had one treatment appointment, since the first appointment is usually for evaluation only. Perhaps you needed more PT appointments or that you didn't get as many injections as I get. I would look into these two treatments further. However, anti-depressants can take away a lot of pain. These medications treat the nerves that cause us pain. I'm surprised that you weren't prescribed one of those medications. I wish you better days with your pain.
Having started with my neck/back problem in my twenties, (now in my 60s), I know how frustrating it can be to not be taken seriously. For years I was told it was nerves, anxiety, xrays showed nothing, pills pills and more pills to deal with the pain and not the problem. Finally at age 50, a doctor I happened to meet through my job finally did a bunch of tests and found I had a very serious degeneration of the cervical spine that had been going on for years. I went to a neurologist, who has also become my friend, and he was able to deal with the pain for a while and put off surgery for a few more years. But he KNEW what was wrong! I urge you to go to a neurologist. They are the doctors who deal with nerve pain, and can decipher where the pain is really coming from. I was also given some stretching exercises to loosen up the area.
What happens is the pain causes you to tense your muscles in that area and makes it all worse. I ended up with having the top three entire vertebra removed and replaced with donor bone several years ago. My neck has been pain free for a few years now. I wish you the best.
Zack, after having the MRI show negative for injury, maybe you need a second opinion and have it read by another Radiologist, as one may have a different interpretation. Are you, or have you ever been treated for depression, anxiety, stress disorders, or so on? I have had neck/shoulder pain since I was 14 years old, and now am 37. In my personal experiece, after being treated with several opiates, muscle relaxants, numerous types of injections, and even a cervical nerve burns, my anti-anxiety medication, and anti-depressant has reduced my pain tremedously! A new doctor that I visited for this problem came to the conclusion that my problem was stress related due to my career path. Having started these medications my pain has been cut in half in only a few months. As your doctor if your conditions could possibly due to the same. I wish you all the best, keep us posted.
Did you just start college? When I first started college I had terrible neck pain from studying. You really need to watch your posture when you are in lecture and when you are studying. Stress of college life (or even just life in general as you get older and more responsibilities) can cause you to tense your shoulder and neck muscles and cause them to spasm. Muscle spasms can be EXTREMELY painful! Stretching and strengthening of the neck and should muscles can really help but there is no quick fix for this unfortunately. Sometimes yoga can really help because you learn to relax and to strengthen muscles in a gentle way. I had this problem for years, starting in my early 20's. It helps me to apply heat, I also see a chiropractor (and it can take multiple visits over weeks to months to begin helping). Neck stretches and exercises will help but it takes time! I know it is difficult to deal with and we all want a quick fix when we have pain.
Ultram needs to be taken around the clock to help best. If it is ordered every 6 hours, then take it every 6 hours, not just as needed, It is a mild opioid like medicine for pain (it is not a true opioid as it is not derived from the poppy plant naturally or synthetically but it does act on opioid receptors in the brain) Tizanidine is a muscle relaxant and may make you very sleepy. Take it at night to help you sleep. If it isnt working for you perhaps Flexeril, Robaxin or baclofen would work better. Gabapentin is for nerve pain. It will help quiet an over stimulated nerve/nervous system but it can take a while to work. A week is not nearly long enough. It is going to take several months before this begins to resolve. Sorry, I know that is probably not the new you wanted. Here is a link to some exercises:
- Naproxen Information for Consumers
- Naproxen Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Naproxen (detailed)
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