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Thread: crushing/stiff/heaviness pain

  1. #1

    crushing/stiff/heaviness pain

    I am not able to get my neurologist to understand, so I hope and pray someone here can offer some guidance. From my traps, down my back and arms/hands, my trunk, hips, down my legs and my feet...they all feel at times as though I'm being crushed....and everything is incredibly stiff (though my muscles are in no way contracted). Arms and legs also feel as though they're filled with a heavy liquid, feet are as though they have on shoes 3 sizes too small, and hands as though they've been smashed. What concerns me the most is that the intensity of these feelings have gotten progressively worse week by week. Does any of this make any sense to anyone? Injury was blunt trauma at c3/5 & c5/7.

  2. #2
    yes some of us get this kind of pain i understand
    i hope this help
    http://www.spinalcord.uab.edu/show.asp?durki=41119

  3. #3
    This sounds exactly like what happens to me. I am YET TO BE dx'd, been badly treated by the medical comm. let me tell you, no better not, just gets me really, really irritated, so I'll spare everyone.

    I started getting this 16 days after my car accident and I had only vicadin to deal with it. It would last for hours and hours, the stiffness and slowness of my movements. Sure pain was gone but Geez, it was like I had Parkinson's. I went to a walkin clinic during a bad episode and the doctor, bless his heart and excellent training, saw this for what it was, a spinal injury. He prescribed Tizanidine, which is like the Baclofen (although it is not supposed to cause the muscle weakness) and this is what curbs the tonic muscles. I get that heavy, tight muscle stuff from face to toes, inside and out. Feels like my face is so freaking heavy its going to slide down off the front of my skull if it weren't for the muscles inside my head reeling it back in. And my tongue gets so heavy it literally will slide across my teeth when I try to talk. Feeling gravity as it really is I suppose. I try not to take too much of it lest I build up an immunity. Not sure if it does this, but not going to risk it. Not sure if it helps, but at the moment this works for me.

    I forgot to mention, when I am having a pain episode at its worst, it is like being crushed. Every square inch of me is being compressed by some force of gravity.

  4. #4

    Angry

    damn///////deja-vu.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by rollin64
    damn///////deja-vu.
    So Rollin, is there anything that might help that you know of?

  6. #6
    nothing helps mine except.....sleep.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by rollin64
    nothing helps mine except.....sleep.
    Sorry to hear that. Your mention of sleeping to escape it brings this back to the surface of this brain of mine. It was about 6 nights ago that I woke up at 1 a.m. in distress. I laid there for about 5 minutes trying to wake up enough to figure out what the hell was happening, and finally realized the reason why I couldn't roll over. I was having a mild/medium episode of tonic muscles. Pretty much stuck in position unable to move. Talk about being unhappy about it, and the difficulty in wrenching myself out of bed to stumble into the kitchen half blind (terribly near-sighted) to get medication into me.

    One time I was dreaming about climbing up something and starting to loose my grip and my feet slipping off of whatever I was climbing on. In my dream my arms started to burn from the shoulders down to the fingers as I hung there, it was just excruciating. And then I woke up. And it wasn't just a dream. It was really happening to me as I slept. My arms were on fire and throbbing. Now what's up with that?

  8. #8
    Denny,

    I believe you are describing the isometric dysesthesia first described in the literature by Aleksandar Beric at the Special Hospital in New York in the journal, Muscle and Nerve. The article was in the earlier 90's. I am sorry I don't have the cite. (Found it, it is Muscle Nerve 1993(Oct):1024-1027). He actually does a pretty good job, considering he doesn't have isometric dysesthesia, but he doesn't flesh it out enough. Your words and the words of others here would help, if doctors would only read them.

    Isometric dysesthesia is MAINTAINED pain in the muscles at rest and includes the tightness you describe. Isometric dysesthesia (as opposed to kinesthetic dysesthesia--the pain of muscles in movement) is different from the tendency to cramp which is common in those with cervical spinal cord injury ie. if some muscle is used, it has increased tendency to go into cramp, which IS relieved by time or massage. It is also different from the burning in muscles when they take a load, either immediately or cumulatively with normal use, which is more like a sore muscles feeling. It is a shame neurologist know nothing of this and almost never venture mentally beyond what is termed autonomic dysreflexia. Early in my CP i had "tics" in my fingers' at a constant rhythm which were periodic--it seemd for all the world like a nervous system which couldn't quiet down. A neurologist told me this was due to uncovering of the protective spinal protective reflexes ordinarily seen almost exclusively in newborns. These tics relieved after several years.

    I am not surprised by your neurologists indifference. We have all felt it. I think the most stirking example is in the Hofman sign of upper motor neuron damage. For the very spastic SCI patient, depressing the nail of the middle finger will will elicit the sign. However, for the intermediate case, the neurologist must instead flick the middle finger upward and the index finger will display a downward reflex similsr to the knee jerk. This occurs very nicely in me, but the nail depression does not work. The top people I have been to always use the flick upwards of the mdidle finger, but I am led to believe many still use the grosser click down on the nail. It is how you do the test that determines what the result will be. This ia a basic neurological test, but the med school version of it persists because it is so dramatic in the completely or nearly completely denervated patient.

    Neurology does best with total injury and less well with incomplete injury. I remember a neurologist pushing a tuning fork into my foot and asking if I could feel it. I said yes, (I could detect it a little) but he presumed this meant I could feel the vibration which I could not, so it is also important how you ask the question. We all get the big rush through because neurologists don't grasp how really complicated our signs are. Of course, objective testing such as the SSEP evoked potentails were markedly abnormal in me.

    I have had a "total cramp" of isometric dysesthesia behind my right thigh plus other tightness phenomena for years. It has not gotten worse--that doesn't make it less distressing.

    There is a link between muscle and nerve which is poorly understood. Beric's article should have been widely read, but it is not. This is very unfortunate. It has gotten so little play that I suspect Beric himself may doubt his own conclusions. These researchers rely on feedback from those with central pain to know where they are going in the dark. There is, of course, no language for most of the central pains. A terrible handicap for us.

    I have not found any medication that relieves my tightness as above described. If someone else pushes into the muscle tendon and stretches it, I get relief for about fifteen minustes of the tightness symptoms. Of course, no medical system is going to provide tendon stretching every fifteen minutes around the clock, although it would be a perfectly appropriate thing to provide and is as severe as many symptoms which are recognized and cared for.

    The heaviness I understand completely and you have done as good a job as I have seen of describing it. You yourself indicate it is hard to describe so you must take the misapprehensions of neurologists in stride. I suggest emphasizing that you realize at the outset that there are no words and that therefore you understand the neurologist will probably put the symptom aside but that he should not disregard it because many or most with central pain in the muscles feel the same thing. You could locate Beric's article and show it to him. He may not credit it, but it is important for neurologists not to take these complaints and think they have the measure of central pain and put it in their hip pocket and walk away.

    I believe the severity of this syptom is almost universally discounted. I am sorry you suffer so. This symptom is often relegated to a variant of autonomic dysreflexia but they are completely different things. AD is a release phenomena of sorts, while isometric dysesthesia is presumably an active signal generated in the sensory arm of the nervous syste, at least that is the way it has been viewed. We need more research into how the sensory and motor are linked especially after the reports of transcranial DC stimulation to the motor cortex for central pain, which is presumably a sensory phenomena.

    For years we have heard pain experts who disagree on much march in lockstep to the idea that there are no "Cartesian" separations between the emotional and sensory aspects of central pain.. (Cartesian refers to the distinct difference between the X axis and Y axis. )Yet, they have no problem maintaining a "Cartesian" separation between motor and senory aspects of central pain. This is understandable, but given the effects of stimulation of the motor cortex, I wonder if they should be so comfortable with separation of motor and sensory.
    Last edited by dejerine; 10-14-2007 at 11:51 AM.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by denny4104
    I am not able to get my neurologist to understand, so I hope and pray someone here can offer some guidance. From my traps, down my back and arms/hands, my trunk, hips, down my legs and my feet...they all feel at times as though I'm being crushed....and everything is incredibly stiff (though my muscles are in no way contracted). Arms and legs also feel as though they're filled with a heavy liquid, feet are as though they have on shoes 3 sizes too small, and hands as though they've been smashed. What concerns me the most is that the intensity of these feelings have gotten progressively worse week by week. Does any of this make any sense to anyone? Injury was blunt trauma at c3/5 & c5/7.
    Denny, I may have something for you to think on. First question, how have you been throughout the late Spring and Summer? When it was really nice and warm out?

    And, did you know you put a question out on the forum board on Nov 3 2006, with exactly the same question? If you were pretty much okay during the summer and didn't feel this muscle stiffness and the heaviness until the weather started to cool in the last month or two, it might just be the change of seasons. Just a thought, because some people here in the forum relate a sensitivity to the cold.

  10. #10
    Senior Member alan's Avatar
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    I feel tightly cramped in my upper back, chest, and abdomen. Legs aren't quite as bad, though they do feel heavyand stuck together (as do my hands.)
    Alan

    Proofread carefully to see if you any words out.

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