552681 tn?1215132532

Cervical Disc Bulges at C3-4, C4-5,C5-6 and C6-7

I have been a passive, yet loyal reader of this forum for awhile and decided today is the day that I post my question. I have learned much from others' questions, but I do have issues that I haven't found addressed so far. I am asking for help and guidance...

In May 2008, I experienced right side numbness in my arm while driving home from work. The numbness continued to the point that I lost use of the arm and it extended down into my right foot and leg and eventually into the right side of my face. Thinking that I was experiencing a stroke, my primary MD transferred me to a larger hospital where I underwent an MRI of my Head and Carotid U/S, and nothing was found at that time that could explain what was happening to me. My symptoms seemed to come and go without explanation, and I returned to my primary MD still seeking answers in Sept. 2008, and she ordered an MRI of my Cervical Spine.

This is  the results of my MRI:

C2-3: No disc bulge or protrustion.
C3-4: Mild diffuse bulge is present. No focal protrusion is seen.
C4-5: Mild diffuse bulge is present. There is mild flattening of the anterior aspect of the thecal sac. There is mild narrowing of the neural foramina bilaterally.
C5-6: Mild broad-based left posterolaterally disc protrusion is present. There is mild compromise of the left lateral recess.
C6-7: Mild broad-based right paracentral disc protrusion is present. There is minimal compromise of the right lateral recess;


This MRI report was six months ago, and my primary MD felt that this was due to some type of trauma that I may have experienced as a young child that is now causing me problems, I am 43, and recalled an incident of being hit in the back of my head with a bat while participating in softball. At the time of this diagnosis,I elected to just wait and deal with the symptoms as they arise.

I have been experiencing increasing symptoms for the past month or so, with increasing fatigue and migraines, then last week while sleeping, I felt an odd feeling of a "squishiness" in the back of my neck, then experienced the feeling of some liquid running down my neck, I was lying on my side at the time. Since this occurrence, I have been in constant pain and discomfort with my neck and my head feels so "heavy" and I am just exhausted most of the time. I was prescribed Elavil to help me sleep, but I experienced so much grogginess with it the next day, I only take it when I have to. Lately though, with the help of Tylenol PM, I am able to rest some, but within an hour of rising, those recurring symptoms of my head feeling heavy and pain in my neck now extend into my upper back through to my mid-chest. I also experience pain under my right arm and I have this feeling of a stick or poker-like pain in my right armpit.

I have been referred to a neurosurgeon and will be seeing him for the first time on March 24th. Does anyone have any experience with the above symptoms, and what would be your opinion about what I might be expecting to hear from the neurosurgeon? I am wondering about PT or epidural injections, or will he recommend surgery? The one thing I keep reading is the recommendation to wait on surgery until the last resort, and I can understand this, yet I am in pain now most of the time. How much more must I endure before I will know that it is "time"? Any and all opinions would be welcome right now!

37 Responses
Avatar universal
Yes, I have the same issue only mine is complicated with a Harrington rod that extends from C6 threw T12. The pain is unbearable and it feels like a million bee stings, when they sting and that initial pain zap only it never stops or goes away. It varies in degrees like I have been awake and in pain (with pain medications on board) for 4 days and nights. I too am having an appointment with neurosurgeon I swore I would never allow them to cut me open again. I am beyond ready. I too am 43 and have a lot I still would like to do. This has been on going for me since April of 08. I am so done nothing helps at this point. I was diagnosed with DD in April of 08 and but Jan of 12 my disc are shot so mine seems to be very progressive. If I were you and they offered surgery I would take it. I have heard really good thing compared to even 4 yrs ago.Mine are all going to the right and my left side is the one affected. but the symptoms are almost identical. You are not alone.
Avatar universal
I have c4-c5,c5-c6 and c6-c7 disc show diffuse posterior bulge with posterior central disc protrusion causing ventral thecal sac indentation,secondary canal stenosis and bilateral nerve root compression.

dr.recommented to truction in physiotherapy

is this right way,(or) we have to go for surgery
Avatar universal
I too am suffering from the same symptons that you are experiencing. I have had one epidural steroid shot with only moderate relief and have an appointment with a neurosurgon in November 2012. The numbness of my fingers on the right hand and the headaches are sometimes hard to handle. I was diagnosed with severe stenosis c6/7 and moderate stenosis at c5/6 this was from the first MRI done in 2011 I have had a second one done last week  and it showed buldged disc @ c3/4, c5/6, c6/7 with midline seperation. I was also told that I do not have the correct cervial cure alienment, meaning my neck is almost straight rather than curved. This problem effects my work at times, since I am required to wear a hard hat all the time. The extra weight on top of my head makes the pain alot worse.
Avatar universal
hi all,I want to know whats the condition for this result of MRI scan:

Posterior central and bilateral paracentral disc extrusion along with bilateral faceto ligamental hypertrophy at L3-4, L4-5 and L5-S1 levels causing significant impression on thecal sac and bilateral lateral recess nerve roots and compromising bilateral neural foramen.

Diffuse Annular Disc bulge at L2-3 level causing mild impression on thecal sac.

Severe degenerative spondylotic changes.

Avatar universal
I have so many symptoms some like yours and others..I don't know where to start. I have had migraines that go from my head down my L side to my big toe. I saw a neurologist and she confirmed it was indeed migraines, I was always skeptical because I always think the worst which to me would be a stroke. I then out of the blue and never an explanation starting have seizures so I do continue with the neurologist. Next came different pain like a freezing pain that could go into side head, jaw, neck, back, arm which really wasn't diagnosed. I have been diagnosed with carpral tunnel syndrome in both hands and of course my job is a secretary. I now have been diagnosed with C5 and C6 bulging discs and am having a epidural shot next week. I am skeptical. In the meantime of all of this I have been diagnosed with Lupus, as migraines and seizures can be symptoms of it. I have so many diagnoses all intertwined and I am having a hard time knowing where to start to deal with it all. I'm sick of complaining and in pain and taking so much medicine at my age, I'm only 48. Can anyone relate? have advice?
Avatar universal
I have mild buldgin c3-c4 basically i woke up 1 morning with neck pain which i thought was a stiff neck from sleeping funny but after 6 weeks of constant neck pain & unbearable headaches i got it looked into , my doc gave me 3 different courses of anti inflams which did not work , ive also been on every pain killer going which have not helped either , ive recently had an mri which has shown buldging disc , my only concern is the serious eye & face pain ive been having , my doc has me taking lyrica 25mg 3 times day for nerve pain which also dont seem to be helping , i have app to see nurosurgeon in Aug 2013 which will be exactly 1 yr since 1st symptoms , its driving me mad :)
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