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aclark86 posted:
Hi, I've been suffering from increasingly bad back pain since I was about 12 or 13... and Im 24 now. It is a burning, achy pain that began in the top of my back, right at the base of my neck. Now, over the last few years it has spread down to between my shoulders, and has created a bony lump at the top of my back. If touched it feels like Im getting stabbed, and I can no longer straightened my back at all. Massage, ice, and heat do not help... so Im at a loss as to what to do. My Pediatrician always told me it was nothing, just my imagination, so i just dealt with it. Now that I am older, I have sought help to no avail. The 1st dr said it was scoliosis and sent me to therapy and wanted to put me in a brace. the 2nd and 3rd dr.s said it was not scoliosis and they had no clue. So finally I went to a Chiropractor who said he didnt know why, but my spine was twisting towards the right and was pressing on nerves to my heart, lungs, and arms. He tried therapy, but it did not relieve the pain either. Does anyone have any clue what the heck is wrong with my back?
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Rafael Levin, MD, MSc responded:
Clearly one cannot make a meaningfull diagnosis based on the information you have provided. Despite your having significant symptoms that appear to affect your quality of life, it sounds like at the very least you should be reasured that you do not have dangerous condition. That being said, I am not sure what diagnostic workup you have had so far. For example, it may be reasonable to get a cervical spine MRI in your case and I am not sure if you had one already. If you have not seen a spine specialist (either orthopaedic spine or neurosurgeon) this far, I would recommend you do so. I am not suggesting this because I necessarily think that there is a surgical solution to your symptms, but because they may be better at identifying a potetial treatable source of your pain to direct treatment accordingly. Keep us updated.
 
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bj1208 responded:
hi and welcome to the support group -

I just wanted to add some things to what Dr. Levin has stated.

One thing that is important, please stop seeing the chiropractor for the time being. The reason for this is that you do not have a full diagnosis of your back problems and they can do more harm than good if they don't know what is going on there.

As Dr Levin said it is important that you see either an Orthopedic Spine Specialist or Neurosurgeon Spine Specialist and have and MRI or CT Scan done (MRI shows more details) - this does not necessarily mean you need surgery but they are the best at reading the film results. And once they know/diagnose your issues they can let you know what the best treatment plan is.

Surgery should ALWAYS be the last resort - after all other treatments have failed - and there are numerous kinds of treatment options - they will give you the best one for you.

Please keep us posted as to what you find out - take care - Joy


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