Friday, February 19, 2010

Herniated Disk in My Neck

My neck has been bothering me for more than a decade, but within the last several months the level of pain has increased in intensity and longevity. About a month ago it got to the point where my whole left shoulder and surrounding area was spasming and I could feel numbness into my thumb and forefinger. Aleve and Ibuprofen were not helping and I cut ties with my last chiropractor so I went to see a doctor. I got an MRI this last week and the results are in! I have a herniated disk. Even though I've had a lot of neck and shoulder pain I'm not certain how long it's been herniated, but either way I'll be getting a few more tests in the coming weeks. I'm actually doing okay for the most part concerning the amount of pain I have, but I do want to fix the problem. Below are a few pictures and a movie I downloaded and edited from my MR images to let you all see what it looks like. Sorry if you can't enlarge the pictures...

This video is a bunch of cross sections of my neck moving down from about where the skull connects to the neck to a little below the shoulder. Notice at around the third and fourth second how the spinal cord (right in the middle of the image) changes from an oval more or less to a flattened crescent shape. That is where the disk protrudes out into the spinal cord.

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