Hi. I just joined this forum in hopes of getting some advice. Here is my history. about 4 years ago I became ill with Gastroparesis and ibs-d. After gaining alot of weight in that time, I was diagnosed with a protruding disc in my back. At the same time my doctor told me I had arthritis formations on my spine. Well, I have been doing exercises to help my back pain, but they haven't been working the past few days. Meanwhile my neck has been cracking and popping constantly. Then a few days ago, about when the back pain came back, my neck became very stiff and I noticed a bulge on the back of my neck. Could this be a muscle tied in a knot? It isn't very big and I just noticed it yesterday. Ive been trying to massage it, and it has helped. I also have positional vertigo and I am doing the head exercises for that, and it seems to help the neck a little, but I just want this stiffness to go away. It hurts. Is there anything I can do about it??? Should I see a specialist?? I had an MRI done on my back, but not on my neck.