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Started by meercat on 08/16/2010 10:56am

Does anyone know if my problems are common to Disc Stenosis?

I have surgery scheduled for a few weeks time at Kings College Hospital, to hopefully alleviate these symptoms, but the surgeon said he isn't too optimistic of good, longterm results.
I have had a disc weakness for over 20 years, and a numb little finger in my right hand, but a few months ago found that along with pain in my upper spine, I had tingling and itching all down my right arm and loss of strength in my thumb and forefinger.
Since the start, the muscle in my hand has substantially wasted and I find it difficult to grip anything. I get 'electric shock' type pain down the arm and into the hand, and constant neck pain.

I had Carpal Tunnel tests to no avail, then an MRI on my spine. This revealed 'Multiple level exit foramina stenosis'.
The surgeon has offered 'bilateral cervical foraminotomies' focussing on the right side.
He told me that the nerve damage relating to my fingers will probably never repair.
Sometimes it feels as though insects are crawling along my upper back and down my arm.

I suffer with Psoriasis, and wonder if the spinal problems are Psoriatic Arthritis.

Does anyone have or had similar problems and if so what is the long term prognosis? I feel disabled as I am right-handed

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1 Response


If my surgeon was not optomistic I would bet getting a second opinion before having surgery! If the nerve damage is done, spine surgery won't help, and it comes with a lot of risks.

I think you should talk to your family doctor or ask to be referred to a pain clinic. Check into physical therapy or medicine for nerve pain like gabapentin, or cymbalta. I had numbness, tingling down my arm, weakness in my hand. I could not hold a glass or pick up a pencil. Physical therapy helped me relieve all of my "bug crawling" feelings. (and it took me a while to find a good therapist) For me, neck surgery is a last resort. I had nerve testing done, but it was negative for carpal tunnel. However the muscles were deteriorating in my hand, and I was frustrated by the weakness. I talked to a surgeon who told me nerve conduction studies and EMGs are often not accurate. I went ahead and had CT release, the difference in my hand was amazing, Within days 95% of the tingling and numbness is gone. I am so glad I had the CTR done.