I had fusions C3 thru C7 done in 2000. I couldn't lift my arms before I had it done and had extreme pain at the base of my skull. I can lift my arms now although only for short periods of time and I have lost all muscle. I can live with that. What is driving me over the edge is the pain at the base of my skull and neck, the choking around the top of my throat, the tightness of my jaw muscles and scalp. I can only lay down or sleep on my left side with my hand under my head propping it up at an angle. It's still not painfree. If I happen to turn onto my back, I will wake up in excrutiating pain at the base of my skull and both arms numb. If by chance I go to sleep in the recliner, it takes about two minutes to wake up from the sharpness of the pain. I have swelling at the very top of my throat, right side. It gets so bad the ear, nose and throat doctor sent me for a Ct immediately when he felt it, He thought I had a tumour in the cartoid artery. Nothing showed up. The cartlidge in my throat becomes very sore and tender to the touch. It feels as if the soft palate has drawn up to my eye balls. There are times my food gets stuck mid way down my chest and it hurts going the rest of the way down. A throbbing senasation stays with me constantly as if there's not enough room for everything that's supposed to be in my neck. The neurolgist just gave me some neurontin which did get rid of the tic under my eye, put weight on and caused me to be half goofy all the time. surgery?
Right now I hav a tender golf ball in the base of my skull.Are any of these symptoms of Chiari Malfor?
Not all completely typical of Chiari, but certainly I would be concerned about something going on at the base of the skull/upper cervical spine, especially as you've had extensive surgery in that region. You may want to talk to your docs and see if an MRI of the brain/cervical spine or even a CT myelogram (MRI preferable) may be helpful to evaluate the integrity of the brainstem and cervical spinal cord. If that is all normal, then a formal evaluation for the difficulty swallowing, which would include a swallow study, may be considered. Start with your neurologist, but if you've run into a dead end then consider a formal consult at an academic center or call your surgeon from 2000. Good luck.
I've had the swallow tests done. They found nothing wrong. The neurologist "is" a dead end. The surgeon that did the surgery has absolutely no interest in his patients once the surgery has been performed. He sent me to physical therapy, of which I had completed 7 visits before the insurance company demanded I stop since all of the fusions had not fused. Thank you for your time. I'm just grabbing at straws since no one seems to want to help here. I'm a young person and have always been active, now the simple action of bendng over to weed my flowers causes such pain in the back of my head it's causing depression that's affecting everything I do.
Again. thank you.
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