This is my first posting in this forum. I"m a regular on many of the other ones here.... I can, in some ways, relate to what you are going through! I also have DDD in my neck. C3, 4, 6, 7. I also have arthritis in my lower back. I'm 34 years old. DDD runs in my family, but I've had a few car accidents, skiing falls, etc, that have contributed to the degeneration. What also plays a major roll in my pain and sensation problems is that I have Lupus and Fibromyalgia. Fantastic mix of pain! (major sarcasm)
I get pins and needles, numbness - sometimes very severe, in my arms, hands, legs and feet. It does make me clumsy, and I drop things regularly. When my neck is really bad, the pain is a 10+. I ususally spend the days/nights in tears.... So I can relate completely to your pain problems. Shoulder checking while driving is impossible! I also get nasty muscle spasms. In fact I just posted a thread on the Fibromyalgia forum about them!!
You mentioned that in your legs you get the extreme itching, burning, ants crawling, shooting pains. I get those too! The ants crawling sensation is awful. For me, those symptoms are my fibromyalgia! I also get the shooting pains in my ankles, and pretty much every single joint in my body. Again, fibromyalgia.
So no, you're not alone. The diseases are different, but we get the same or similar symptoms. dealing with neck pain is one of the most difficult things in the world to cope with. I'm still trying to find ways to manage it all. ONe thing that has worked for me is physical therapy that includes ultrasound, electrical stimulation and some light massage. I wish I had more to offer you in the way of advice or ideas. I need help too!
How are the lyrica and medicinal mari working for you? Those are fibromyalgia treatments too. I'm trying Neurontin. We'll see how that works.
Keep enjoying life JJ! Talk soon,
Ginny (I'm in Alberta!)