I think Wobbly's in on the right track. MS won't cause the degeneration that usually preceeds a bulging disc, but if the joint between the vertebrae is weakened by the arthritis, then the muscle spasms in the spine, or spasticity itself, could possibly tip the scales over into causing the disc to bulge.
Sounds plausible. It's the way the other parts of the body behave.
I have a spasticity in my neck. I think it leads me to sleep on my neck wrong. No amount of stretching or physical therapy has helped. I finally learned to hypnotize myself so I could ignore the pain and fall asleep.
Thanks everyone. I've heard others on the forum say that they have bulging discs in the neck, so this got me thinking if there was a connection with MS.
I think this all makes sense. I was diagnosed with reactive arthritis about 12 years ago. With MS, any kind of pain or discomfort makes my body react by fighting itself--a war going on in my muscles. My brain says, "Stop it!" but my body does whatever the heck it wants to.
I have/had bulging discs in my C-Spine. I underwent surgery last Jan to correct 2 of them. My MS neuro had made a comment at that point, that almost 95% of the patients they see have Bulging discs. The center was thinking about starting a study. I don't know if they did or not.
I also wonder if it is due to all their patients having MRI's and that is why it is seen. Perhaps "most" people have some bulging? and it is just that the MS population tends to get MRI's?
That's interesting--I had no idea that there was such a high percentage of people with MS with this problem. Thanks for the information! I hope they do have a study on this to help prevent this in people with MS.
Was it a horrible surgery? I've heard from someone that had an operation to remove the discs tell me it was, and it took about a year to recooperate from it. My neuro mentioned that this surgery may be needed in the future.
Add me to your neck ailment issues. My probs are w/herniated disc (it's not always herniated), and spurring and disc ridges that are att the same area of largest lesion in my c-spine. What a nightmare. I try to keep it at bay, but like HVAC, I originally thought I was always sleeping on it wrong or something until imaging showed the problems.
It's like a snowball, and pain rolls deep into the the top of shoulder, into the arm, elbow, forearm. Mine is aggrevated by sitting.
I bet you there's a connection. I'm doing a poll to see! I do wonder what symptom goes with what sometimes (bulging discs in neck which the neuro says isn't pressing on my spinal cord or the MS). My right arm is dead at times--I have to use my other arm to move it. Sometimes this problem wakes me at night when I'm sleeping on my back, but I'll have problems just out of the blue when I'm sitting in a chair as well.
My surgery involved removing the 2 discs, replacing them with Cadaver bone and they put a plate with 6 screws. They went through the front of my neck, and my incision is about 2 inches long.
I wore a neck brace FULL TIME for 4 weeks, then part time for 2 more weeks. I was house bound for the majority of that time. It was difficult.
After about 3 months I have "full" motility of my neck.
I know have anther herniated disc about the 2 they replace. However, it is not compressing my spinal cord, so at this point, I dont need to do anything about it. When the neuro was the spinal cord compression, it was an emergency surgery to fix, Any damage to the spinal cord is irreversible.
I wish you lots of luck and feel free to ask me any questions.
I had the surgery at C4-5 2 years ago. Cadaver bone, titanium plate and screws. I never wore a brace. Current thinking seems to be a brace, on a simple, single, fusion hinders the healing and strengthing of the neck. My surgeon said when I woke up from surgery that my neck would be stronger than it was before surgery. The first 2 weeks were the worst. After 1 month I was cleared to go back to work driving 8 hrs a day. Too soon in my opinion, but drs don't listen to us! LOL. If you have to have this done, don't be afraid. It would probably aggravte any flares for awhile, as I still have a lot of residual pain in my neck and shoulders. However, I have more bulging discs and DDD also. Good luck. Bulging discs CAN heal on their own, especially if caused by an accident or injury. If caused by degeneration, osteoarthritis etc., not so much. Make sure you have an excellent neuro-surgeon if you do the surgery.
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