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C1-C2 Subluxation
I have been suffering from rheumatoid arthritis for the last 12 years. The neck is one of the many affected areas. Lately the neck pain is stronger and the head movements are limited by pain and stiffness. I also feel a "grinding" sensation when moving my head up and down. These symptoms diminish or almost disappear when the arthritis abates or goes in remission for a day or two. My doctor told me that I should look for a Neurosurgeon to check me for a possibility of C1-C2 subluxation. My questions are: How this diagnose is established and if the spinal cord can be suddenly damaged or is it a gradual occurrence, preceded by certain symptoms. I would appreciate any comment related to this subject.
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The C1-C2 subluxation is basically a misalignment of the first 2 cervical vertebrae.  It is usually caused by trauma and can be diagnosed by X-ray, CT-scan or MRI.  Consult a neurologist to assess your symptoms properly.
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Thank you very much for your comment. I am still wondering, however, if it can be caused by arthritis damage in the neck, besides trauma. I shall follow your advice and make an appointment with the neurologist. Any further comment would be welcome.Thanks again.
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Aside from trauma, it has been reported that rheumatoid arthritis can, indeed, lead to cervical subluxation as a result of cervical joint destruction.  Your neurologist can explain to you in detail how the cervical subluxation causes the symptoms you are experiencing.
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Thanks a lot for your elucidating comments. For general information, I intend to post the results of my visit with the neurologist, planned for next month. Happy holidays.
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hi,
i had 3 surgeries with the last one the most drastic.  i hope you don't have this problem, it's not fun, but its livable.  my life did change but thanks to God  and my family everything is okay.  my problem is a result of ra.  i've had the disease since i was 23.  i had the ra for 26 years when the problems with the neck started.  i had the first surgery within one month of diagnosis and 2 1/2 months after first symptoms.  the symptoms consisted of both arms from the elbows down asleep, drooling, severe pain (like a karate chop) in the back of the neck only lasting a couple of seconds upon standing.  those were the reasons i went to the dr. afterwards i realized i was having a little trouble walking and i just didn't feel well.  my husband actually knew something wasn't right before i did.  the first two surgeries were performed by a neurosugeon and the third by the neurosurgeon and a highly regarded orthopedic spnal surgeon.  the surgury lasted 13 hours, a little longer than they originally thought because my bones were very soft and small.  i feel very fortunate to have the care that was given to me and of the good outcome.  i hope things go well for you.
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hi,
i had 3 surgeries with the last one the most drastic.  i hope you don't have this problem, it's not fun, but its livable.  my life did change but thanks to God  and my family everything is okay.  my problem is a result of ra.  i've had the disease since i was 23.  i had the ra for 26 years when the problems with the neck started.  i had the first surgery within one month of diagnosis and 2 1/2 months after first symptoms.  the symptoms consisted of both arms from the elbows down asleep, drooling, severe pain (like a karate chop) in the back of the neck only lasting a couple of seconds upon standing.  those were the reasons i went to the dr. afterwards i realized i was having a little trouble walking and i just didn't feel well.  my husband actually knew something wasn't right before i did.  the first two surgeries were performed by a neurosugeon and the third by the neurosurgeon and a highly regarded orthopedic spnal surgeon.  the surgury lasted 13 hours, a little longer than they originally thought because my bones were very soft and small.  i feel very fortunate to have the care that was given to me and of the good outcome.  i hope things go well for you
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Hi,

Rheumatoid arthritis can cause C1C2 subluxation. It occurs in up to 70% patients with rheumatoid arthritis. A clinical examination and radiographic work up is sufficient to make the diagnosis.

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