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Thread: really puzzled!!

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Hermiston, Oregon, USA

    really puzzled!!

    Thank you all for posting regarding my brother-in-law....We spent the day at the hospital yesterday....they took Dave in with a plug that they couldn't get coughalated out and the neck pain continued very severly for him the rest of the day. It reminded me of when he was transferred to Good Samaritan in Portland from St. Charles in Bend, three and a half weeks after the accident, his gallbladder had to be taken out. I remember the neck pain to be almost unbearable for him. It just seems like there is something really going on as he has been in the hospital for a week's time, twice in the last two months and when our little hospital said there is nothing else they could do for him and suggested that he go back to Good Sam in Portland (three hours away) to figure out what's up....he instantly went into "actor" mode as he doesn't want to go to Portland, but we're all guessing that there is so much more going on....his liver enzymes showed concern when they put him in the hospital two weeks ago, but went back into the normal range when he left the hospital. The swelling in his right leg is somewhat back to normal. At one point yesterday, upon trying to do another CAT scan, his blood pressure kept blowing out and they gave up on the of his eye pupils dilated much more than the other!!

    Again, I apologize for the mixed up post, but we're all very confused about DAvid, hate to see him in such pain and are truly so terribly worried for his health and life. I don't think it should be this hard....his caregivers are all scared and certainly his family confused and hurting for him.

    Does anyone have suggestions as to why Dave is experiencing such intense neck pain??? The hospital has done upper GI's and lower GI's, CAT scans and intense blood clue at this point as to why he can't seem to get past his feeling so badly.

    He has had quite a few UTI's recently, but has been on antibiotics, two and three at a time, in the past two months.

    Any, and every suggestion would be appreciated....

    Sheila K. Cozad

  2. #2
    One pupil dilating more than the other is a symptom of Horner's syndrome which can accompany what sounds like an episode of AD, hence the BP spike. Has he had an MRI, the pain in his neck may be caused by a pinched nerve or a slipped disc.

  3. #3
    Junior Member BurntHorses's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Lexington, Oregon, USA
    Could his neck pain be due to something going wrong somewhere else? Seeing as he doesn't feel pain anywhere else.. Could it be his body's way of saying " Hello!! I hurt!!"

    That is something we are starting to wonder...


    He who's not busy being born; is busy dying.

  4. #4
    Sister, it is really hard to guess what is going on. Since you say that he is in the hospital, I am assuming that his doctors know about it and somebody is working on teh problem.

    People with spinal cord injury can have neck pain above the injjury site just like anybody else can have neck pain. The first thing that I would probably do is to try to localize the pain, figure out if it changes with movement, and what position aggravates it. This may give you an idea of its cause.

    Also, you may as well start thinking like a doctor. The first thing that a doctor does when confronted with a problem is to establish a differential diagnosis list. This is a list of possible explanations of the symptoms, ranked in order of likelihood. You just need to go down the list and rule in or out each possibility. Here is my differential diagnosis list:

    1. Strained ligament or muscle (the most likely and the least dangerous)
    2. Herniated disc (can be ruled out with an MRI)
    3. Screw loose (only if he has an anterior or posterior plate that was screwed on, CT/MRI would rule out)
    4. Cord compression (unlikely if he is showing no other symptoms but can be easily rule out by MRI)
    5. Syringomyelia expanding (can be ruled out with an MRI)
    6. An expanding meningomyelocyst or a cyst external to the spinal cord (can be ruled out by MRI)
    7. There are a few other possibilities that are too unlikely to be listed here.

    As you can see, all the possibilities can be ruled out by MRI or CT scan, except for the most likely first possibility. If your brother shows no change in the MRI, it is most likely to be due to a strained ligament, a pain in the neck.


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