I have a curveture and herniated disk problem in my neck. I have had many tests done in regards to the dizziness everything else seems to check out ok. I have dizziness and disfunction with fine motor function problems. The dizziness is becomming more and more difficult to deal with. Doctors that I have seen have giving me mixed reviews. Some say the dizziness should not be caused by the neck. I have recently read on this forum someone else having the same problem. I am concerned that I am doing unrepairable damage by not correcting the problem. Please help with some direction.
Thanks for using the forum. I am happy to address your questions, and my answer will be based on the information you provided here. Please make sure you recognize that this forum is for educational purposes only, and it does not substitute for a formal office visit with your doctor.
Without the ability to examine you and obtain a history, I can not tell you what your symptoms are from. However, I will try to provide you with some possibilities
As you know, dizziness can have many causes. Vertigo, or "room-spinning dizziness" can be caused by several different types of inner ear problems and less commonly from central nervous system diseases. Cervical disease disease (such as a herniated disc in the cervical (neck) region or arthritis of the spine) can cause vertigo, though this is not common More often, the dizziness is not room-spinning per se but rather a whooziness or sort of light-headed dizziness. I will refer to this as cervicogenic dizziness. This notion of cervicogenic dizziness is not accepted by all medical practioners, it is controversial, as it is not well researched, difficult to diagnose, and difficult to conduct research on. However, it may be diagnosed in someone with neck pathology and dizziness in which no other cause is found. Therefore, it is a diagnosis of exclusion, after inner-ear and brain problems are excluded.
Patients with dizziness due to neck pathology (cervicogenic dizziness) often compolain of dizziness that is worse with particular head movements and when the head is maintained in one specific posture for prolonged periods. Neck pain and a headache in the occipital region (the back of the head above the neck) may be associated with the dizziness. The dizziness may last minutes to hours after assuming certain head positions.
You mentioned concern regarding permanent damage from your disc. I really can not comment definitively on this, but in general dizziness due to a cervical herniated disc does not necessarily imply risk of impending permanent damage. As you may know, there are specific indications for herniated discs, and not everyone with a herniated disc requires surgery. The usual treatment is antiinflammatories and physical therapy. For people with dizziness, a specific type of physical therapy that must be done by certified therapists can help retrain your vestibular system. indications for surgery are severe and protracted pain, sensory or motor loss due to the disc, or pressure on the spinal cord. Indications for surgery are best assessed by a neurologist with an MRI of the spine and with a test called an EMG/NCS and by a spine surgeon.
If you have not yet been evaluated by an ENT and neurologist for your dizziness, I recommend you do so. If all other causes are ruled out and you are diagnosed with cervicogenic diziness, vestibular rehabilation by a certified physical therapist may be helpful to you; continued follow-up with your physicians is recommended.
Thank you for using the forum I hope you find this information useful good luck.
I am wondering where to go from here. Last April I went to the ER with extreme dizziness, and left arm numbness and tingling down to my fingers. While there, I had a BP of 201/ 186. Although I have a family history of high BP, before this point, I had only had high white coat BP. I started on BP meds in June, and my BP is regulated well.
At the ER I had a CT of the brain which led to an MRI with incidental findings of an arachnoid cyst (~3x5x6 cm) in the left temporal area, a tiny CCM or chronic micro-hemorrhage, 3 lesions in the white matter "non-specific foci" and a mild C2 disc bulge.
I then asked for an MRI of the cervical spine due to chronic headaches, shoulder and neck pain. I also had an MRI of the lumbar spine, where I already had a known L5-S1 rupture, with new sciatic pain on a different side of the body and burning numbness in the right thigh. The cervical spine MRI showed degenerative findings on every level, mild to severe foraminal and central stenosis at various levels, and a moderate-severe bulge at the C5-C6 level. Also mild straightening of the lordosis.
I opted for PT for the lower back, and ESI for the cervical spine. the first ESI gave about 12 hours of relief (the anesthetic, I assume), and the second gave about 2 weeks of relief. The left arm numbness is gone, and headaches are less frequent.
I also had a stress echo test in June, which was normal. CRP testing was normal.
Meanwhile, I developed charlie-horse like cramping in my legs, arms and neck. My doctor drew 6 vials of blood and tested thyroid, enzymes, kidney, liver, magnesium, creatinine CK, CBC, etc. Everything came back normal except the B12 = 148, where 200 is low. So, I've been on 2000mcg oral B12 supplements since Oct. 6, and we'll test the level again this Friday.
Meanwhile, I've been to GI to find cause of B12 deficiency. (I'm not a vegan, don't drink any alcohol, and am not anemic.) Endoscopy and colonoscopy were normal, and biopsies were negative for H. Pylori. I just had a blood draw for H. Pylori to double check (no results yet). I do not have celiac antibodies (nor any sign in the above tests), and my folate levels are fine.
Lots of the B12 symptoms are disappearing - sore tongue, muscle cramps, fatigue, leg weakness, hand tremor, brain fog, vocabulary recall, concentration, etc. I was never anemic.
The problem is, I am still experiencing bouts of dizziness (hours long, 2 or 3 days per week), and stumbling when I walk. I have been to the ENT department for vestibular and hearing tests, which were all normal. The Dr. there thought it might be related to allergies, but I use loratadine, fluticasone and singulair for allergic rhinitis on a daily basis, and I feel my allergy symptoms are well controlled.
I did go to the ER in November due to dizziness that would have caused me to fall if I had not been washing dishes and able to grab the sink and call for my husband. It came on suddenly, with no warning. The ER doc made the ENT referral.
The neurologist I have seen twice (most recently last week) while admitting that my brain findings are very rare, especially in the same brain, does not think they are related to the dizziness, does not think I have MS (I didn't bring this up with him, but I have to admit I was wondering), does not think the B12 is causing the dizziness, and does not think it's cervicogenic dizziness. He offered to order another brain MRI to make me feel better, but really didn't think it would show anything different, so I left it where if the dizziness continues after my B12 issues are figured out, I might ask for a repeat MRI. He told me I didn't have cancer or a stroke so I should go home and live my life. Still thinking about that statement.
My questions then are - should I get the MRI? Would it make sense to see a spine specialist? Can B12 deficiency cause this dizziness (lightheaded - not spinning) after I've been on supplements for almost 3 months? Any other thoughts?
I appreciate your help.
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